STATE REP. J.P. MIRANDAâ€™S recent legal problems may take on an interesting texture. His attorney CHUCK PERUTO has charged that SETH WILLIAMS, the District Attorney, is bringing the case against Miranda out of jealousy and spite. Allegedly both Miranda and Williams have been dating the same woman.
There is no telling where this case might go, but it is rare for the DA to prosecute other political figures. The previous DA referred political cases to the State Attorney General or even the feds for resolution. During these types of cases, the issue of bias and rivalry almost inevitably comes up, as it already has here. Stay tuned for further details.
Most of labor is firmly behind STATE SEN. TINA TARTAGLIONEâ€™S reelection effort. It is amazing that powerhouse union leader JOHN DOUGHERTY is able to simultaneously lead the labor movement and also work against the grain. Doc is backing former City COUNCILMAN DAN SAVAGE even though many of his union counterparts disapprove. But Doc brings the most money and volunteers of any of the labor unions. Most of the Hispanic community seems to be lining up behind the husband of COUNCILWOMAN MARIA QUIÃ‘ONES SÃNCHEZ. In three-way races, the incumbent often wins. So some have speculated there may be some kind of deal between the Tartaglione camp and SÃ¡nchez camp.
Speaking of labor unions and their strong influence on politics â€¦ Ironworkers Local 401 is now in trusteeship. The international has appointed New Jersey STATE SEN. STEPHEN SWEENEY as the trustee. This is an interesting development because Sweeney is a big-time politician in New Jersey. Folks are watching and speculating how Sweeney will handle the sizable PAC funds that he will control.
MAYOR MICHAEL NUTTER is finally reaching some agreements with the municipal-employeeâ€™s unions in Philadelphia. He has refused to negotiate for several years, but is now close to finishing negotiations with all of the AFSCME unions. Last week he signed a deal with the white-collar city workers who are represented by AFSCME Union DC 47 and their PRESIDENT FRED WRIGHT. Now Nutter is meeting with AFSCME DC 33, which represents blue-collar city workers and is led by the formidable PETE MATTHEWS.
When Nutter gave up his challenge to the Firefighters arbitration award, he claimed substantial savings was found in the city budget. This latest agreement with DC 47 and renewed talks with DC 33 lead some to believe maybe Nutter has found even more substantial savings.
Labor has been meeting regularly to talk about a unified front in their support of the next Mayor. STATE SEN. ANTHONY WILLIAMS has been perceived by many as the clear frontrunner but word on the street is that labor is not particularly fond of him. The reason is Williams is an unabashed supporter of school choice and voucher programs. His support has long been perceived as a slap in the face of the PFT. The PFT does a wonderful job representing teachers and is often in the line of fire. Their PRESIDENT JERRY JORDAN continues to be an independent and strong voice for teachers. His negotiations with the SRC have been just as acrimonious as the municipal-workersâ€™ negotiations with the city.