The Daily News reports that electrician unions chief John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty has been hosting lunches with other labor leaders, with a goal to “coalesce” around a mayoral candidate.
Former Republican mayoral candidate Sam Katz loves to tell the story about when a reporter asked him if the rumors are true that he still wants to be mayor. Katz’s response: “I’ve wanted to be mayor since I was a seven years old.”
Today’s announcement that Katz is resigning as chair of the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Board (PICA) is being read by some as the first sign that he may be considering another run in 2015.
Two weeks ago, the Daily News reported that the pastor of Bright Hope Baptist Church, Kevin Johnson, was exploring a mayoral run (i.e. running for mayor). Philly Mag then ran this interview with him, in which he sounded very much like a candidate. This morning he sent an email to supporters declaring he had changed his mind. Here it is.
For those of you who know Kimya and me, you know that our first priority is our family and the second is the congregation at Bright Hope Baptist Church. We take the responsibility of being parents very seriously, and their development is paramount for us.
Last night, I shared with my officers that I will not explore a run for Mayor of Philadelphia in 2015.
While I will continue to serve in various capacities in our great City, at this time, my responsibilities as a father and pastor will be my focus.
I pray God’s richest blessing upon you and your family.KRJ
The Daily News reports that likely mayoral candidate Kevin Johnson’s children attend West Philly’s prestigious Penn Alexander School. The problem? Classroom slots are supposed to be open only to residents of the school’s catchment area — and the Johnson family lives four miles from the nearest boundary from the school.
He’s an outsider, but not an unknown. On Sundays, Kevin Johnson stands in the pulpit of Bright Hope Baptist Church, preaching sermons to the same congregation once led by the late and much-loved U.S. Rep. Bill Gray III. Now Johnson is considering his own entry into politics, announcing this week that he is forming an exploratory committee to consider running for mayor to replace Michael Nutter. He talked to Philly Mag about the challenges facing the city, the relationships needed to bust through gridlock, and about sharing a famous name.
You’re forming an exploratory committee to run for mayor. Simple question: Why would you be a good mayor for Philadelphia?
I believe I would be a good mayor for Philadelphia. One [reason] is because I understand the pain and the challenges that are here in the city. Every day I see and talk to people here in Philadelphia who are hurting. I am passionate about people and fighting for them, particularly our children as it relates to public education, and I’ve decided to become more involved and begin to address some of these serious issues.
Kevin Johnson (not the ex-NBA player and mayor of Sacramento) is forming an exploratory committee to run for mayor. Johnson is the pastor at Bright Hope Baptist Church, near Temple, which has not only a large following but some political muscle behind it.
Come 2015, the answer to that question might determine whether or not Ed Rendell seeks a third term as mayor.
In recent days, Rendell has downplayed his interest in returning to City Hall. He did so again in a brief phone interview this morning, telling me: “It’s not something that anybody should be thinking about.”
But Rendell does seem to be giving the idea some real thought.
Read more »
Nostalgia is a powerful emotion, especially for Philadelphians pining for better days (and winning sports teams). Things in the past were just better, more navigable and less stressful. Some of us can even remember a time when our school system wasn’t completely boned.
Which, naturally, is why so many Philadelphians are longing for a change in leadership, specifically one that hearkens back to an era when we proudly carried the chip on our collective shoulder and got things done. We are, of course, wanting for Ed Rendell’s Philadelphia of old. Now if we could just convince the Big Guy to run.
Allan Domb, Philly’s Condo King, couldn’t think of a better guy to have in office right now:
“If Ed Rendell is mayor, the spirit of Philadelphia will change overnight, investment from the business community will skyrocket immediately,” said Domb, the Center City condo developer and real estate broker. “We have to do this. Who do you put in a basketball game with 44 seconds left and everything on the line? Your best player.”
Political strategist Mary Isenhour agrees:
“Who wouldn’t want Ed Rendell as mayor again?” said Mary Isenhour, a strategist who ran Rendell’s 2006 gubernatorial reelection campaign, adding she knows of no serious discussions toward that end.
Ditto for Democratic consultant Daniel F. McElhatton:
“There’s nostalgia for competency, leadership, communication skills,” said Democratic consultant Daniel F. McElhatton. “All the candidates out there are unknowns. Ed Rendell is a known commodity.”
Sam Katz, of course, provides the rare dissenting view, exhibiting Rendell’s record in office as the prime example of the former Gov’s unlikely fit:
“The things the mayor will need to do over the next eight years are not things Ed’s going to want to do,” Katz said. “He spent the first year in City Hall cutting, and hated it – but most of his experience, in the city and the state, was during times of economic expansion … Why take a reputation that borders on as good as it gets and put it at risk?”
Nostalgia, while powerful and comforting, often provides little more than emotional security, and that might be behind the lure of Mayor Ed 2.0.
The only good thing about the good old days, after all, is that they’re over. [Philly.com]
Yesterday, Mayor Pedro Segarra of Hartford, Conn., thought he’d show Dave Chapelle how it’s done when he tweeted some facetious advice to the comedian, who left the city in a huff last week after some hecklers disrupted his performance at the Funny or Die Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival.
Dave Chappelle should quit whining, do his job and try some yoga. #HartfordHasIt P.E.S.
— Mayor Pedro Segarra (@HartfordMayor) September 5, 2013
“Dave Chappelle should quit whining, do his job and try some yoga,” Segarra tweeted. He ended the dig with the civic pride-oozing hashtag #HartfordHasIt. Amid all the chuckling, we’ve compiled a list of Philadelphia mayoral zingers, because, y’know, #PhillyHasIt, too.
1. “Ain’t no immaculate conception happening up in here.” —Mayor Michael Nutter
The Mayor made this statement while expressing legitimate concern about the phenomenon of absentee parents during a speech at his church. What he meant was, unless your kid’s the messiah, you’ve got no excuse for not supervising your kids.
2. “You’re going to name your baby Hostile.” – Mayor Wilson Goode
And yes, that’s hostile as in aggressive and argumentative. The ever-serious former Mayor shot this quip at then-pregnant journalist Tia O’Brien, who was known for relentlessly questioning public officials. Guess she officially had his blessing.
3. “Nation of Wusses“ – Mayor Ed Rendell
Former (and future?) Mayor Rendell named his memoir based on a statement he made while expressing disdain about a cancelled Eagles game. The quote, he later explained, had a much larger social context. Not that it was necessary. Canceling a football game is all the proof we need for the “wussification of America.”
4. “A conservative is a liberal who got mugged the night before.” – Mayor Frank Rizzo
Put that in your memoir, Ed. Mayor Rizzo was a lot of things, but a wuss wasn’t one of them.
5. “#dropthemic” —Mayor Nutter