February 8, 2008 at 9:02 pm

Kilpatrick: 'I am on an assignment from God'

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick leaves an hour-long interview with radio personality Frankie Darcell, host of the Talk of The Town midday show on 92.3 FM. (Ankur Dholakia / The Detroit News)

DETROIT -- In one of his first detailed comments about the text message scandal that has rocked his office, Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick "wasn't thinking" when he made the choices that have strained his marriage and led to an investigation into whether he committed perjury.

"With all the things that are going on there were times I where I wasn't thinking too well," Kilpatrick said. "It is clear that I have been disobedient to God and you know I made him some promises and I am getting a whooping for it."

Kilpatrick made the comments Friday during an hour-long show with radio personality Frankie Darcell, host of the Talk of The Town, on WXMD- FM (92.3, the Mix). The mayor has been involved in a scandal since the Detroit Free Press published text messages that showed Kilpatrick and his former chief of staff, Christine Beatty, had a romantic relationship, even through they denied that under oath during a whistle-blower trial last year.

Wayne County Prosecutor is investigating whether to bring perjury charges against the mayor. Meanwhile, Carlita Kilpatrick, the mayor's wife, stood beside him and said publicly that she still loves her husband.

Darcell, a personal friend of the mayor and his wife, peppered the mayor with questions and from some of her 1,500 listeners who e-mailed questions to the station.

The besieged mayor said he didn't plan to resign, and felt he could get through this.

"This will pass and we will be onto other things," Kilpatrick said.

He said he has never been a quitter and doesn't plan to start now. He even alluded that he may seek reelection.

"I believe I am on an assignment from God," he said. "This city has a balanced budget. We're building buildings God has continue to smile on us. I don't believe this has ever been a job I love this city. I love this job. I love this town."

Kilpatrick saluted his wife, and said they were relying on their faith to help them get through this.

"My wife is absolutely amazing I can't even talk about her without crying," Kilpatrick said. "She's unbelievable. I love her. She loves me. We're prayerful. We are continuing to move forward."

His three sons still look up to him even though they were initially disappointed in him, the mayor added. His wife asked them to write him a letter.

"At the end of the letter, they wrote they love, they love me always," Kilpatrick said. "I am their role model, I am their hero. I'm their man, and when I got home they gave me a hug and since then we have been moving forward."

Kilpatrick also commented on Beatty, who resigned in the wake of the scandal.

"She gave a lot in terms of work ethic and professionalism to the city," Kilpatrick said. "We both made some mistakes. What she did was the right thing to do. I'm hopeful she has an incredible life after this."

He added that many people in the business community have shown him support, including Roger Penske, George Jackson and General Motors.

Kilpatrick, who's been on Darcell's show numerous times before, frequently made references to God.

"I have to reconcile and repent for my sin against God," he said.

He also told the citizens he was sorry for his actions.

"I apologize immensely to the people of this city."

He assured the citizens he could be trusted in the future.

"I am not perfect. I am a man. I am going to err," Kilpatrick said. "I know with all my heart I will not err in this way again."

During the one-hour interview, Kilpatrick alleged numerous times that the Free Press got the text messages illegally.

"The Free Press has committed a crime," Kilpatrick said. "Now their paper is involved in covering up their criminal activity."

Caesar Andrews, the newspaper's executive editor, said that's nonsense. "It's not true," he said.

Andrews would not say how the Free Press got the text messages but said the newspaper did nothing illegal. "We have an understanding with sources; we will honor that understanding," he said.

"It's surprising that such a normally smart man would make these kinds of claims."

You can reach Kim Kozlowski at (313) 222-2024 or kkozlowski@detnews.com">kkozlowski@detnews.com.