The Post-Gazette's Dan Simpson has some pungent thoughts on Pittsburgh's history of one-party rule. Particularly with regard to where that party appears to be going with Mayor Ravenstahl at the helm.
When Mr. Ravenstahl grows up he might make a decent mayor. At 27, being 27, as he tells us when we the media point out what he is doing, he feels free to accept gifts from the Penguins and UPMC and to commit the typical cardinal sin of officials in a one-party state -- employing public assets for his private use. Only someone who knows he will get elected no matter what he does would use a Department of Homeland Security-provided vehicle to go on a recreational outing with his wife. But that is normal behavior in a one-party state.
2 Political Junkies offers some excellent commentary on Simpson's piece.
The only chance DeSantis has, I think, is if a large portion of Democrats can separate themselves from their party affiliation long enough to consider the possibility that a vote for a Republican might actually be in the long-term interests of the Democratic party. That is, given the disparity in party affiliations in the city, it seems unlikely that a victorious DeSantis would be the first member of a long-term Republican dynasty. But he might be there long enough to shake things up with the powers that be. Perhaps enough that a guy like Peduto or any of the others could at least CONSIDER making a run in future elections.
So yeah. Maybe we could convince them that a vote for DeSantis is actually a vote for Peduto, or some such.
Of course, all of this fails to consider the possibility that a lot of people have a vested interest in NOT shaking things up. At all. The system does serve some people well. I think a lot of us are SHOCKED that things are the way they are, and spend a lot of time thinking about how the system has failed. But has it? People are allowed to vote. They do vote. They just appear to prefer candidates that a lot of bloggers and other chatty folks don't like.
In my eyes, the election is not about who I prefer. I am voting AGAINST the 70-year dynasty Simpson takes to task. If my best option for toppling that dynasty was a vote for Peduto, I'd vote for him. Same with DeSantis. (Although I do happen to like some of the things he's said so far.) But if my only option were a Libertarian candidate, or a Green candidate, or any other, that's whom I would vote for. Even if I thought the guy was a dangerous goon. Because it would amount to a vote against the entrenched--and increasingly preposterous--local elite.