4th Philly Council Member Resigns As Mayoral Race Exodus Continues

City Councilwoman Cherelle Parker resigned Wednesday, one day after two of her former colleagues, Maria Quiñones Sanchez, who has represented the 7th District since 2008, and Derek Green, an at-large councilman in his second term, quit to run for mayor.

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Democrat Cherelle Parker quit Philadelphia City Council on Wednesday to explore a run for mayor in 2023.

Her resignation comes one day after former Council colleagues Maria Quiñones Sanchez and Derek Green resigned and officially threw their hats into the ring to be Philadelphia's next mayor. Parker stopped short of saying she is running. A fourth former Council member, Allan Domb, quit last month to explore a run for mayor as well.

Parker, like Quiñones Sanchez and Green, has been involved in Democratic Party politics in Philadelphia for more than two decades. She previously served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives for 10 years before being electing to City Council, which is seen as a much more prominent elected office than the state House.

"I see the crossroads at which our city is standing," Parker said in her resignation letter to Council President Darrell Clarke. "I know that our future has the potential to shine so bright, but it is not yet written. ... [W]e only get there if our leaders understand the path and its challenges."

She did not say in her letter that she is actually running for mayor.

Quiñones Sanchez became the first Latina to serve a district on City Council when she was elected in 2007. Green, a former assistant district attorney and legislative aide to retired Council Majority Leader Marian Tasco, was in his second term on Council.

All three submitted their resignation letters to Council President Darrell Clarke this week. Clarke did not say whether he would call for a special election to fill the remaining year-plus left in the resigning Council members' terms, but a source close to him told NBC10 on Tuesday that he is most likely to call for special elections on Nov. 8 for Council seats representing specific districts.

Pennsylvania delegate Cherelle Parker cheers for Michelle Obama on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia on the first day of the Democratic National Convention, July 25, 2016. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Parker represents the 9th district, which makes up neighborhoods in Northwest Philadelphia. Quiñones Sanchez represented the 7th district, which consists of Kensington and other neighborhoods in North and Lower Northeast Philadelphia. Green and Domb were two of the seven at-large Council members.

“I’ve been grateful for every minute I’ve been able to serve, grateful for every vote, and every person who’s raised their voice to make Philadelphia a better place," Quiñones Sanchez said of her 14 years on city council. "We’ve made progress. And I am excited to continue that progress as the first woman of color to be elected as Philadelphia’s next Mayor."

Philadelphia's Home Rule Charter mandates city officials to quit their positions before pursuing another office.

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