With all the ado recently over the almost evenly split party lines drawn and whether the Democrats will continue their small majority in the House or not, I remembered some of the recent history of candidates hoping to represent Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. The typical play for Senate and Mayoral seats remains stable-promise the voters one thing, then another. This is notoriously true of Philadelphian and Pennsylvanian Democratic candidates for Senate and Governor.
This is what I have been thinking lately; does it really matter whether the elected official is a Republican, Democrat, Independent, Communist, or what have you? Well, the latter may be pushing the issue a bit, but it just makes sense to me. As long as the person that we, as Philadelphian voters, elect to the office of Governor, Senate or Congress, does the job they need to do, does it really matter what party that person represents?
For example, for months now, Joe Sestak (D-PA) has spoken up about how the health care reform and tax cuts should pass and he did in fact vote for the Health Care reform that passed in March 2010. However, when it finally came down to the wire, with three weeks left before Election Day 2010, Sestak changed his mind. He decided to back Pat Toomey’s (R-PA) play instead-saying maybe he was right all along.
Another example lies with Dan Onorato (D-PA). In the beginning of his bid for Governor of Pennsylvania, he first stated in a report dated January 11 2010 that he did not support a tax on the Marcellus Shale natural gas industry. However, in a more recent report dated August 18 2010, he did support the tax. The same article stated that Onorato was “hopeful for a “competitive tax rate for the natural gas.
Why the Switch?
It is a simple answer, really. These two Democratic candidates have figured out they are losing to an uphill battle, so they decided to switch to the more favored side on whatever issue is troubling them. The fact is that it looks like the Republicans will win this mid-term election, so the Democrats are doing whatever they can to get back on favor with their own people-like me.
The problem is that politics is like the Internet-once you say something, it never goes away. That said, I believe that once a candidate says something, they should stick to their guns and continue to support that statement-and the job that comes with it-unless they prove themselves wrong, for the right reasons. What Mr. Sestak and Mr. Onorato are doing, flip flopping back and forth between stances with numerous debates is wrong.
Philadelphia is broken, what with the scandal in the Housing Authority, the lashing out by Mr. Street’s race issues against Mayor Nutter and Mayor Nutter’s immigration flip-flop, not to mention the consistent flip-flops by all candidates for the mid-term Elections 2010, we, as Philadelphian voters, must fix Philadelphia by voting for the best man, not a political party. Again I ask, what does it matter what they say as long s they do the job they were supposed to do when we elect them?
Mark Scolforo, “Political Map May be Redrawn,” Wayne Independent
“PA GOP: Onorato Flip-Flops On Marcellus Shale Severance Tax,” Politics PA
David Bennion, “Mayor Nutter Can’t Have it Both Ways on Immigration,” Young Philly Politics
“Why is Sestak Flip-Flopping on Health Care – Perhaps Because Pat Toomey is Right?” Politics PA