If you don't want to vote for Mayor Jon Mitchell or City Councilor Brian Gomes for mayor this year, consider lifelong New Bedford resident David Pimentel.

It is hard to run for office and it is particularly hard to run for the first time. It takes personal confidence and dedication to get out there and talk to people about issues and solutions. Most people who run for office aren't as prepared as they need to be, because they are doing it for the first time.

David Pimentel is offering the voters of the city he grew up in an interesting option this year. If you want to send a message to the status quo, he is potentially the vehicle for that message.

I like Dave and his wife Amy. I love that they live on a boat in the waters of New Bedford. He and Amy are working hard to get out his name and to ask people what they want for their city. He is passionate about the benefits of cannabis and prominently displays that famous leaf on his campaign materials.

I like that he is a man who knows how to actually do things, important things like welding, carpentry, and agriculture. He knows how to pilot a boat and how to fix the boat when it breaks, and they always break. Practical knowledge is a rare thing these days.

He is focused on spreading a positive message about the importance of healthy food, exercise, and pure water for children as opposed to putting children on pharmaceuticals like Adderall and Zanax. He has been a longtime caller to my radio show and you can hear in his voice that he honestly cares about people and his hometown.

I appreciate that if I asked him to meet me at the old Parkwood Hospital, or the old Pine Grove Pharmacy, he would know exactly where to meet me without question. It is important that the mayor of the city knows local history and has deep local roots.

I don't think Dave is ready to be mayor this time around, but I hope the voters will consider him and encourage him to stay involved in the political process. I know he will continue to learn more about how the government functions because he is a smart person who has a demonstrated ability to learn complex tasks.

This year, David Pimentel is like a third-party candidate in a presidential race. You know they aren't going to win but you want to send a message, so you give them a vote.

Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at chris.mccarthy@townsquaremedia.com and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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