So, i got a couple of form emails from Joe Trippi yesterday, the first urging me to support Gov. John Street, the second being a correction of the first, urging me to support Mayor
John Street in the upcoming election.
Those of you unfortunate enough to not live in Philly have surely heard about the FBI bugging the mayors office, and you may have heard about the very close, very unsatisfying mayoral race taking place right now.
There's Street, who was a City Council member since 1979, CC president since the early '90s, and mayor since 2000. He's a gruff and tough dude, who's certainly had his share of political mis-steps (punching fellow CC members, shoving camera-men, controversial statements, allegations of corruption, etc.). While his demeanor has never been pleasant, he has done some good for the city, concentrating on the poor and under-represented.
Then there's Katz, a Democrat-turned-Republican business man who's served the city in various capacities, none of them elected positions. Since most of what he's done has been behind closed doors, it's tough to say how effective he's been, but allegations of shady dealings and embezzelment abound. He's campaigning on the standard Republican ticket of lowering taxes and supporting business in the hopes of getting people to come back to Philly.
So, here we are in the middle of an election where most people are voting on party and racial lines (the political racial divide in this town is huge, easily the worst in the US), and it all comes down to the swing vote - hence the sudden campaign help from around the country supporting both sides.
I find it interesting that Dean has jumped on the Street bandwagon, since he's obviously not at all connected to the situation.
If I was in his position i would not have done so, especially since most of Philly knows that Street is corrupt, and is supporting him as the slightly better of two bad options.
And of course, if this FBI thing finds inproprieties in City Hall, we'll see a mad rush of people distancing themselves from Street. The non-Philly folk who have involved themselves probably won't have a hard time of that, but Dean having his name next to Street's won't help him in the primaries in this worst-case scenario.