POLS ON THE STREET: A Republican Steps Forward To Challenege Nutter‘No One Goes Home,’

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BY JOE SHAHEELI/ The Mayor’s race has to have a lot of people thinking. Can Mayor Michael Nutter be beaten?
If the scenario that has taken place since 1951, when the City Charter became the law of the local land, still holds true, he can’t be beaten by a Republican candidate, though on a couple occasions their mayoral candidates have come close.
That history doesn’t daunt the chairman of the 5th Ward Republican Committee, John Featherman. He’s already filed his political-committee registration, putting him first in line as an official candidate seeking the Republican nomination for the 2011 primary.
His platform, reports his ward leader Mike Cibik, will be to make voters know he will bring “reform to the Republican City Committee, energize the Republican base, and challenge Nutter on his failed financial and economic policies and the political patronage and corruption at City Hall.”
Featherman, no stranger to citywide campaigns, ran in 2007 for the office of Clerk Of Quarter Sessions. He netted the largest percentage of votes for any Republican candidate, although not enough to win the seat.
The Pennsylvania Democratic Party has a new chairman: Pittsburgh lawyer Jim Burn. Burn was elected without opposition last weekend by the Democratic State Committee to succeed T.J. Rooney, a former State legislator who has headed the party since 2003. He’ll serve a four-year term.
Burn has been chairman of the Allegheny Co. Democratic Committee since 2006. He is an elected member of the Allegheny Co. Council and a former Mayor of Millvale. An attorney, Allegheny County Councilman, and father of two, Burn has long worked with the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and formerly served as the Mayor of Millvale. He assumed the Chairmanship immediately following his election.
Penny Gerber of Mongomery County was elected as Vice-Chair and Ann Bursis of Wayne County was re-elected to serve as treasurer.
As Gov. Ed Rendell enjoyed the close cooperation of Rooney, Dan Onorato shares the same, if not more so, with Burn. They attended North Catholic High in Pittsburgh.
It’s obvious the western end of the Democrat Party in the Commonwealth has begun to shape the Party with a western leaning. Those in the east are going to have to work and beg harder to get their due should Dem Gubernatorial candidate Dan Onorato be successful in November.
The Democrat City Committee has its rule book closed and all of its ward leaders elected for another four years and a leadership voted in unanimously with Congressman Bob Brady as chairman.
Half of the above can be said of the Republican City Committee. It has its chairmanship and Republican Counsel positions and a bulk of ward leaders in the record book for the next four years. But it won’t be until the end of next week that all the challenges have been lodged by both sides of the intra-party feud will have been heard. Some have been adjudicated already, however.
Said one active member – in the middle between the State-sponsored opposition group and the regular Republican City Committee – “I believe we will be a united party by the time the Billy Meehan Clambake rolls around in August.”
Unhappy over a rescheduling of a vote for his leadership in the 65th Ward is Phil Innamorato. His leadership vote had been contested. Phil knew the City Committee had ruled there would be a revote, since his leadership had been contested. He notified them he would be out of the country, as of now, for three weeks, a trip he had planned months earlier. He asked for the revote to wait until his return. His committeepersons indicated they would wait. But Phil is out and the vote is tonight at Smokeaters Bar in Northeast Philadelphia. He must have one horrendous phone bill.
Nathan Shrader, long-time campaigner and political analyst, has signed on the Marc Collazzo campaign for State Representative in 170th. Look for Shrader to give the GOP nominee a robust campaign against a feisty, ever-campaigning State Rep. Brendan Boyle.

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One Response to POLS ON THE STREET: A Republican Steps Forward To Challenege Nutter‘No One Goes Home,’

  1. Although Phil Innamorato was elected ward leader by a vote of 14-13, the contest committee decided a re-vote was necessary. The result of the 65th Ward re-vote by a margin of 18-10 was in favor of Tom Matkowski. There were a number of committeepeople who had voted for Innamorato in the first election who were not allowed to re-vote because they were not recognized as winning during the primary on May 18th since as write-ins they won with fewer than 10 votes.

    Elmer Money
    July 1, 2010 at 6:50 am

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