Former Detroit police chief Rev. Ralph Godbee leaves congressional race

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Former Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee announced Tuesday (March 29) that he’s suspending his campaign for the 13th Congressional District.

Godbee says it’s an effort to not split the Black vote in a crowded field of candidates.

“In an extremely crowded field of candidates in a Democratic leaning district,” said Godbee. “The reality is the winner of the Aug. 2, 2022, primary election will be the odds-on favorite to be Michigan 13th District’s next representative in the United States Congress. Representation matters, and for a marginalized community such as African Americans and, more pointedly as black people, we need competent and skillful black representation in federal legislative seats where it unequivocally matters. In an election cycle, as truncated as this one is proving to be, I have enough support to split the African American vote or syphon off votes that could be codified behind a consensus candidate. After prayerful consideration, consultation with my immediate family and my Pastor, I have decided to end my campaign for Michigan’s 13th Congressional District and continue my service to the community I love and have sacrificed for through the ministry of the Gospel of Jesus Christ as Chief of Staff of Triumph Church.”

Reverend Godbee will continue in his role as Chief of Staff for Triumph Church, a multisite ministry with seven locations in Metro Detroit.

“When I announced my candidacy for the 13th District Congressional seat, I did so with the noblest of intentions,” Rev. Godbee said. “Noble intentions must, however, be paired with a level of maturity to understand whether your presence can add value to a campaign or be divisive.”

Godbee plans to announce who he will support at a later date.

The primary election is set for Aug. 2.

“My personal mantra of service is the rent we pay for the space we occupy,” says Godbee. “I have prided myself on being a servant leader from the day I walked into the Detroit Metropolitan Police Academy at 19 years old on May 18, 1987. In law enforcement and in ministry, I have given my all toward what I believe to be the greater good of my people and community. It is for others to decide how effective I have been in either role. Yet, ultimately God is the one to whom I must answer to relative to my motivation for public service, and when my tenure on this side of glory is over, I want to hear him say servant of God, job well done.”

Related: More Michigan political coverage

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