Candidate Rick Swartz Challenged for Place on Democratic Ballot
On Friday, March 30, in the courtroom of Judge Joseph M. James, beginning at 1:30 PM, Allegheny County Chief Executive candidate Richard P. Swartz (long-time director of the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation) will have his day in court. Facing a team of lawyers from one of the most highly regarded and expensive law firms in the state, candidate Swartz intends to persevere with an all-volunteer staff and the help of his lawyer, Leechburg Mayor and current Armstrong County Judicial Candidate, Charles A. Pascal, Jr.
Last week, an unprecedented string of nominating petition challenges sidelined many would-be candidates, and sapped the time and resources of other local candidates such as Brenda Frazier and Patrick Dowd, who emerged victorious. Other prominent candidates have dropped out of contention at the city and county level.
Current chief executive Dan Onorato is praising the resulting absence of challengers: "Maybe the city's in a position to look for some security and let things settle down a bit...We don't have elections to distract us."
Is democracy a distraction? Richard King, defender of the democratic process, says, "Democracy is about open debate...Dan needs a challenger to pull him out of being too secure." Voting rights advocate Audrey Glickman, adds, "Perhaps [democracy] makes Mr. Onorato feel insecure, distracted, and subject to scrutiny because of his poor choice of a soon-to-be-obsolete voting system." Adds past Democratic ward chair Jonathan Robison, "We need to debate the proposed transit cuts and hold a referendum. This is a deeply inappropriate time to close down the primary process."
Candidate Swartz is determined to remain on the ballot, and his campaign will help Chief Executive Dan Onorato hear the messages he's not currently getting from his inner circle. To that end, Swartz asks supporters to code their contributions: donations ending in $.95 for people who are upset about the transit situation; donations ending in $.96 for people who are upset about the voting machine fiasco; $.97 for road and development decisions; $.98 if you feel the assessment issue has not been fixed; and $0.99 for people who generally support the democratic process and want the county executive to listen better on ALL issues.
Acting Campaign Manager Joy Sabl
Campaign contributions to Citizens for Swartz:
208 S. Pacific Ave, Pittsburgh PA 15224-1720
Website (under construction): http://www.citizensforswartz.com
Richard P. Swartz for County Executive: "A real Democrat listens."
Ironically, The Post-Gazette runs a story the very day that Danny O's Camp is in court to try to keep Swarz off the ballot telling how Danny feels about court cases that folks bring against him/his:
Allegheny County Chief Executive Dan Onorato complained about the courts meddling in county business yesterday after two recent rulings went against his office.
He called a news conference, he said, because he wanted to "express a little frustration in trying to govern and constantly having the judiciary block us as we try to deal with a home rule government."
Karma's a bitch!