Allentown's Leader Announces Gubernatorial Run

Another Democrat has thrown his hat into the ring for Pennsylvania governor.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski announced Sunday that he would run in the Democratic primary for governor.

“This is not a decision that was easily made,” said Pawlowski in a press release.

Allentown’s chief executive is wrapping up his second term leading the state’s third-largest city.

“As mayor of the third-largest city in the state and president of the Pennsylvania Municipal League, I have seen first-hand the damage that has been done to our Commonwealth over the past four years under the current Administration… I cannot sit idly by and let our state continue to suffer.”

A Kick-off press conference for Pawlowski's campaign is scheduled for Monday morning in Allentown.

No sitting governor has lost a bid for a second term, but Corbett is widely considered vulnerable. None of his major initiatives -- new taxes to bolster transportation projects, prospective rollbacks in public pension benefits and the privatization of state-controlled liquor and wine sales -- got majority support despite Republican control in both chambers of the state Legislature.

Meanwhile, most of the Democrats running in the May 20 primary, or considering a run, have high-level experience in state government.

They include U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, former state revenue secretary Tom Wolf and two former environmental protection secretaries, Katie McGinty and John Hanger.

Two other potential candidates have won statewide campaigns: state Treasurer Rob McCord and former state Auditor General Jack Wagner.

Pawlowski said he has seen the state's problems firsthand as president of the Pennsylvania Municipal League. Among his accomplishments at home, Pawlowski said he has reduced crime, added 80 police officers and reversed an $8 million budget deficit.

"We have done many great things in Allentown, accomplishments made possible because we were able to work together across party lines," he said. "I want to bring that cooperation to Harrisburg."

Pawlowski is a former community organizer and former executive director of the Lehigh Housing Development Corporation. He and his wife, Lisa, a social worker, have two school-age children.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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