Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Of Sickness and the Firefighter's Union

Spent the day in bed fighting a vicious cold with various forms of medication.

Blogging on Ny-Quil, while tempting, just makes for confusing, rambling posts and is to be avoided at all costs.

Rambling, confusing posts while not on Ny-Quil is par for the course.

Did have a chance to read about the Pittsburgh Fire Union endorsing Republican Joe Weinroth for Mayor.

Couple thoughts:

(1) Joe King, the Fire Union President, is a political player. This is the guy who's 800 votes swung the election to Murphy last time around. Joe knows this; he understands the symbolic, if not the real power of this move.

(2) We also know that last time he didn't support O'Connor either, so no big shock that he's not doing it this time.

(3) Joe says that O'Connor isn't meeting with anyone, which, according to my sources is true. According to these same sources, however, O'Connor has been meeting with some unnamed groups, and it has taken some pull to get O'Connor's time and attention. Joe's obviously been waitlisted from seeing the Don like Frankie Pentangeli in Godfather Part II.

(4) Joe fears for his job. The next mayor is going to have to make some significant cuts in City service. O'Connor will probably not cut much into broad community programs, leaving the Fire Union open for attack. Weinroth, who is not as involved in the local community scene, will probably have an easier time gutting programs that he is not vested in. The fire department, a basic city service, is less likely to get the hatchet than, say, the Parking Authority. Joe King knows this too and likes his odds with Weinroth.

(5) So, will this signal a flight from O'Connor and towards Weinroth, or will this serve to entrench the Democratic ground troops and advance O'Connor's cause against disaffected Progressives and Reformists who may fear a Republican Mayor of Pittsburgh?

November is only a month and a bit away, and the safe money is still on the Silver Fox.

No comments: