Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Mayoral Hopefuls Crash Party Democrats Meet to Endorse Candidates for Mayor, Council, Common Pleas Court

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Mayoral Hopefuls Crash Party Democrats Meet to Endorse Candidates for Mayor, Council, Common Pleas Court

Article excerpt

Pittsburgh Democrats left their annual endorsement meeting Sunday with eyes on Tuesday's candidate filing deadline for answers to the question of how many candidates would emerge in the suddenly scrambled field for mayor.

Officially, the committee members now have their candidate, as city Controller Michael Lamb was the only one seeking their support. City Councilman Bill Peduto chose not to seek the party backing. The shifting pool of other potential candidates for mayor were locked out of the party balloting because its filing deadline had passed before Mayor Luke Ravenstahl stirred their ambitions with his announcement that he would not seek re-election.

Mr. Lamb said the endorsement would be an asset no matter how the field shakes out.

"There are few endorsements that carry as much weight as this does," he said. "With the committee behind me, I'm just excited to be able to get out into the neighborhoods and talk to people about Pittsburgh and really making Pittsburgh, the great city that it is, making it live up to its full potential for everyone."

Several of his potential rivals mixed with the committee members during the five hours of voting at the South Side headquarters of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

Among them were Darlene Harris, the city council president, and state Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Highland Park. Former state Auditor General Jack Wagner was also working the crowd, apparently too vigorously for party officials, who asked him shortly after 1 p.m. to leave the IBEW voting site, since he wasn't a candidate or voter. Mr. Wagner, who had been considering a run for mayor as an independent in the fall, quickly switched his focus to the Democratic primary after Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's surprise announcement March 1 that he would not seek re-election.

Another figure with roots in the South Hills, state Sen. …

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