G Marrano photo/WFIR

Roanoke City Mayor Sherman Lea Sr. broke ranks today with independent council members Bill Bestpitch and Ray Ferris – both running for reelection next month as independents. Lea backed the Democrats running for three open seats – Robert Jeffrey Jr., Djuna Osborne and Joe Cobb. Fellow Democrats State Senator John Edwards and Delegate Sam Rasoul also endorsed the Democratic ticket today.