PHILADELPHIA–December 18, 2017–As we approach the end of 2017 it is pertinent that we collate major events associated with the Democratic leadership of Philadelphia. We should also summarize where Democratic leadership has brought the city to stand in key areas related to resident well being, such as the economy, violent crime and education.
“Over the past year, the Democratic leadership of Philadelphia has become focused on ‘virtue signaling’ their adherence to a Progressive agenda, rather than implementing the necessary changes to increase quality of life for the average Philadelphia resident. While we saw, at their hands, a call for harmless statues to ‘drop,’ we also saw harmful violence ‘rise.’ While we heard the mayor address his ideological grievances with the enforcement of law and order by the Trump administration, we heard next to nothing about the unemployment and poverty issues that have continually plagued our city for at least the past decade. We can hope–although based in precedent probably in vain– that in 2018, our Democratic leaders will engage in more purposeful action to increase quality of life for all residents, and less impotent rhetoric to placate the most radical faction of their party,” said Michael Meehan, Chairman of the Republican Party of Philadelphia.
Citywide civic and political events led by Democrats in 2017:
- Philadelphia District Attorney and Democrat Seth Williams quickly resigns from office, pleads guilty to charges of bribery and is sentenced to 5 years in prison.
- Democratic City Council member Helen Gym catalyzes a controversy over the statue of former mayor Frank Rizzo, which sits in front of the Municipal Services Building by City Hall. The controversy divides the city along ideological as well as cultural lines, pitting Progressives and the African-American community against more moderate residents and the Italian-American community.
- Democratic Mayor Jim Kenney spars continuously with the Trump administration over Philadelphia’s status as a sanctuary city, and continually refuses to work with ICE to turn over illegal alien felons to federal authorities.
- Democrat Larry Krasner is elected to the office of District Attorney; a darling of George Soros, Krasner has previously sued the police over 75 times and also represented radical social groups like Black Lives Matter and Occupy Wall Street.
- The city of Philadelphia imposes income-based water bills, inevitably punishing middle-class residents who pay their bills on time by burdening them with the unpaid bills of other residents.
Amidst all of the corruption, controversy and bad policy, Democratic leadership have ignored key issues directly related to resident well being:
- With a violent crime rate already standing at nearly 300% of the state average, Philadelphia once again witnessed an increase in homicides. Current statistics kept by the Philadelphia Police Department report 300 homicides so far this year, a 13% increase over 2016.
- As of September, 2017, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics reports that Philadelphia maintains the second highest unemployment rate in the 11 county region, resting at 6%. This is also much higher than the national rate of unemployment, currently resting at 4.2%.
- The Philadelphia Inquirer noted in September that Philadelphia has retained its title as “the poorest of the 10 most populous cities,” while also recording the highest rate of “deep poverty,” defined by the US Census Bureau as people living at 50 percent of the poverty line or less.
- The Tax Foundation releases key findings on the controversial Soda Tax passed by Mayor Jim Kenney in 2016. Among them are revelations that less than half of the money is going to fund pre-K educational programs, as the mayor originally said the funds would be used. Additionally, they conclude that poor revenue performance on the part of the tax threatens the sustainability of the educational programs it funds.