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Lewis backs Franklin

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Shirley Franklin rolled out the second of her Big Three endorsements from Atlanta political heavyweights Tuesday when U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-5th, announced his support. Former Mayor Maynard Jackson should round out the trio.

Members of the Atlanta Labor Council, which also has announced its support of Franklin, joined Lewis at the IBEW building for the endorsement.

Franklin has known the congressman since she moved to the city in the 1970s, and worked with him when he was a city councilman during the 1980s.

Franklin, who supported Lewis during his last campaign, hopes his endorsement has an emotional impact on fence-sitting voters.

"It speaks to people in their hearts, because they know John stands on principles," Franklin says of the endorsement by the civil rights icon. "[He] is a hero to many, many, many Americans."

And he's also a stalwart Democrat -- like Jackson, Young and Franklin -- who can take shots at Robb Pitts for his Republican leanings.

The political nod from Lewis, though, comes as no surprise, and the Pitts campaign probably has already factored it into its strategy. But looking for comment Friday afternoon, CL couldn't reach a Pitts staffer to ask about the campaign's take on the Lewis endorsement. (See story above.)

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