Three 007 Candidates Piling Up Cash
Shaheehli and Rory G. McGlasson
The mayor's campaign for 2007 is rolling along. Though no candidate has
officially announced, the fundraisers continue to move.
Three, in the forefront of the candidates freqently mentioned as entries into
the 2007 Mayoral Primary, held successful fundraisers this week.
The first, Johnny "Doc" Dougherty, Business Manager of Local 98 and Democratic
Party treasurer, held another in a series of fundraisers at McFadden's, at the
Phillies Ball Park.
This event drew the largest crowd by far, increasing the funds going into DOD007
campaign treasure chest. The Draft Dougherty committee, unlike the birthday
party, held the following night in the Northeast, distributed enough
pre-election paraphernalia to leave no doubt its intention is to see that John
Dougherty soon announces his intention to run for the mayor's seat.
It was Controller Jonathan Saidel's birthday party, a perfect time for a
fundraiser, and the first publicly promoted event for him since his "not
running" announcement. It was held at one of the major union halls along
Southampton Road in the Greater Northeast.
Though it's obvious Saidel intends to run for mayor, neither he, nor the guests
who attended the event displayed any material that would leave those attending
or the press to believe his party was anything but "a birthday bash".
Elected officials on hand for the Saidel event were Sen. Michael Stack, Rep.
Mike McGeehan, Democratic candidate for the office of City Controller Rep. Alan
Butkovitz, and City Commissioner Edgar Howard.
Rep. Michael McGeehan worked the role of master of ceremonies well saying to the
crowd "It's rough to be the emcee who introduces the city's most renowned
Labor, on the whole, has yet to make any decisions as to who will be supported
at this stage. Labor leaders were in abundance at all three events, with unions
sending representatives to each party. The conclusion from that is organized
labor, for the most part, are in a wait and see attitude, as one leader said,
"It's a long two years before we have choose sides."
Philadelphia Building Trades President Pat Gillespie has attended all
Dougherty's events at McFadden's at the Ballpark giving the hint the building
trades would push for Doc. Northeast Philadelphian ward leader John Sabatina,
56th, was also present at the Doc ballpark affair.
"Getting more new faces and more people at these events is what it's all about,"
said Dougherty's spokesperson Frank Keel. "We are in a good position if John
decides to run."
Congressman Chaka Fattah is raising money he doesn't need to remain in his
present office. A number of Mayor John F. Street's elite fundraisers put in an
appearance at a Wyndham Plaza fundraiser Monday night.
His hosts included Comcast Vice President David Cohen, Developer Robin Rubin,
and attorneys Leonard Klehr and David Hyman, among others. They've all been with
the mayor through his two terms.
Present, but not present at the Wyndham Plaza event was Mayor John F. Street.
His close staffers, showing up in support, included Shawn Fordham, George
Burrell, and Joe Grace, among other members of the mayor's staff.
Fattah has come the closest of the three to indicate he will be a candidate for
the mayor's seat. If he does run, he told the crowd, "I expect to see more new
faces in government." He also announced he plans to unveil a vision of a "new
and greater Philadelphia" in the near future.
Since "the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray", there is more to
this race than what can be reported here.
Rev. Dr. Anthony Floyd, president and CEO of the Philadelphia Council of Clergy,
with a long history of backing winners in municipal and state elections, has his
own ideas of who should be mayor.
He launched a petition drive early in March "drafting Congressman Bob Brady for
Mayor". He believes his goal of 100,000 signatures is easily attainable and
indicates he is well on the way to gathering that many names.
"We believe, when those petitions are presented to Congressman Brady, the only
one we believe who can truly bring this city together, he will have to give our
cause serious consideration."
There are other scenarios playing out behind the scenes, all pointing to a fact
the 07 race won't be easy to handicap until all the players are in past the
withdrawal of petitions deadline.