Knox Nixes Campaign, Endorses Nutter

Mayor Nutter picks up support from a former rival & a former Mayor

By Catherine Brown
|  Tuesday, Feb 22, 2011  |  Updated 9:17 PM EDT
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<a title=Tom Knox ends months of speculation and announced he's nixing a second run for mayor. In a surprise appearance, Knox joined former Pa. Gov. Ed Rendell to endorse Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter's reelection to a second term." />

NBCPhiladelphia.com

Tom Knox ends months of speculation and announced he's nixing a second run for mayor. In a surprise appearance, Knox joined former Pa. Gov. Ed Rendell to endorse Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter's reelection to a second term.

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Tom Knox finally ended the suspense about his political aspirations on Tuesday.

Knox, a former mayoral hopeful, and former Pa. Gov. Ed Rendell stood together to endorse Mayor Michael Nutter's reelection for a second term.

A successful businessman who came in second to Nutter in the 2007 Democratic mayoral primary, Knox said he considered running again "so that I could help people in the city of Philadelphia."

But, Knox said he decided that the only way to defeat Nutter would be to run a negative campaign.

"That's not who I am and that's not what I want to become," said Knox.

Knox revealed that he and Nutter have met to discuss the challenges facing the city. Knox said he believes that "the Mayor understands the problems of Philadelphia and that he truly gets it."

Knox will chair the Mayor's Task Force on Facility Management, Utilization and Disposition.

Nutter said Knox will help evaluate over 1,300 city-owned facilities to determine how they're being used and how to get the most value for those properties going forward.

Knox served as Deputy Mayor for Managment and Productivity under then-Philadelphia Mayor Ed Rendell.

Rendell heaped praise on Knox's success in saving the city millions during his 18 months in city hall.

Rendell, a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, (NBCUniversal is the parent company of NBC10) also delivered a ringing endorsement for Nutter, saying the mayor has made good on his campaign promises in the areas of economic development, ethics in government and crime, with the help of Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.

"I do so because I believe he's done a good job steering the city through challenging and difficult times," said Rendell.

Nutter is facing opposition for the Democratic mayoral nomination from T. Milton Street, Sr., brother of former Mayor John Street.

Republican committeeman John Featherman is the only announced GOP candidate for Mayor.  Featherman has said he's intent on reforming the Republican City Committee.

The GOP did not make any recommendations for mayor at its endorsement meeting on Feb. 15.

The primary election is scheduled for May 17.

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