...and there could be cracks appearing in Philadelphia's Democratic Party apparatus. Apparently Bob Brady feels that John Dougherty is running candidates for local ward committees
around the city in order to build up a base of support for his future mayoral campaign, at the expense of party unity and of seasoned workers for the important races this fall. The newcomers are all members of the electricians union, of which Doc is the head.
"It is clear that this effort has been started by forces that seek to polarize and destroy this party," U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, chairman of the local party, wrote last week in a letter to ward leaders whose committee members are being targeted, offering to protect them.
The Daily News version of this report cites a source that Brady (party chair) asked Dougherty (treasurer) to quit
on Monday, which would indicate more than a trivial rift. Doc didn't sign the letter, but he may not end up getting any support the next time party officer elections are held.
"Brady told him, 'You're out now or you're out in June,' " one Democrat said, referring to the election of party officers after the primary.
"John Dougherty is an insider who is now battling those who put him in there, and he's doing it at a time when you don't want to piss off ward leaders," said one ward leader who spoke on condition of anonymity. "I don't know if he has half of the 69 votes he'll need to be re-elected."
Dougherty has apparently asked some of the candidates involved to withdraw, but it may be too little too late for his own prospects.