Game On: Philly Primary Battle Getting Dirty
Philadelphia City Council candidate Danny Savage just sent out a press release claiming that Quetcy Lozada, chief-of-staff for Maria Quinones-Sanchez (his opponent), was in the middle of a small protest at an endorsement announcement this morning, and they say they have a photo that proves it.
Here’s the complete press release. I have a call into Lozada for comment. [UPDATE: see below for comment.]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
May 2, 2011
Why is Maria Quinones-Sanchez’s Chief of Staff at a Political Event at 10:30 AM on a Monday?
PHILADELPHIA: This morning at an endorsement of Danny Savage by Representative Angel Cruz and Ward Leader Emilio Vasquez, a small but rowdy crowd supporting Maria Quinones-Sanchez attempted to shout down the speakers and even began tossing things at Cruz and Vasquez. In the middle of the misbehaving group? Maria Quinones-Sanchez’s Chief of Staff Quetcy Lozada. (see attached photo)
“Today’s actions represent the worst kind of politics and the actions of her supporters and chief of staff are inexcusable,” said Savage today after the event. “By encouraging her staff and supporters to behave like this, Maria has lowered herself, she has diminished her office and embarrassed the voters of the 7th Councilmanic District.”
Questioning why Quinones-Sanchez’s chief of staff was at a political event on a Monday morning at 10:30 AM, Savage also noted this is just the latest in a long string of ethical lapses by the Councilwoman dating back over a decade when she was faulted for filing incorrect campaign finance filings for her first Council race.
During her term in office, Quinones-Sanchez has been cited by the Ethics Commission, given her staff raises while voting for budget cuts and taken a city car while voting for higher taxes. In this campaign, Quinones-Sanchez has allied with convicted ward leader Carlos Matos after he was rebuffed by Savage when he asked for government jobs in return for political support. Quinones-Sanchez is also supporting for Council president someone who is enrolled in DROP.
“I pledge to never allow my staff to participate in politics during working hours,” closed Savage today. “There needs to be an immediate investigation of this incident and why a government employee like Maria’s Chief of Staff is participating in politics during working hours. It is unacceptable and yet another reason why voters across the District understand it is time for Maria to go.”
Born and raised in Frankford, Danny Savage represented Philadelphia’s 7th Councilmanic District in 2007 following a special election. The owner of several successful small businesses, Danny revitalized Frankford’s business corridors and reinstated a key Special Services District to encourage the area’s economic revival. Danny also revitalized the district’s playgrounds and recreation centers, which has earned him local and national awards.
UPDATE: Heard from Quetcy Lozada, who says that she had a vacation day today and can spend it doing anything she chooses. Lozada adds that as of May 9, she will be on leave-of-absence to work on Quinones-Sanchez’s campaign. “We need a mobilization of women,” says Lozada. “We have to take a place out front. They don’t want us to come up. They want to suppress the vote.”