Mayoral race next year thins

Mayor Michael Nutter’s path to re-election may have gotten a whole lot easier yesterday. Though regularly mentioned as possible candidates, both Sam Katz and Councilman Bill Green said they wouldn’t be running for mayor next year.

Neither said they were pleased with the job Nutter’s done, though.

“The city’s adrift, and that’s not a good place to be. For whatever reason, he hasn’t lived up to the expectations,” Katz said, noting that Nutter has reinforced an image of “elitism, of not listening and of putting great distance between the power of government and the people. Mayors need to be partners. I didn’t realize how much of a lone ranger he was.”

When he joined Council in 2008, Green says he hoped Nutter would “make efforts to fix pension and health care issues and problems. We really haven’t done that since this mayor is not willing to make tough choices needed to get us back in shape. The city deserves a debate on the next four years, [but running] is not something I’m prepared to do at this point.”

Now, businessman Tom Knox stands alone in political gossip circles as a potential candidate.

Two down, how many more to go?

Nutter has plenty to be wary of heading into next year’s mayoral election year. But one political consultant said it was fortunate for Nutter that Katz will not challenge.

“It’s obviously good news that the one person who’s been through it before, knows what’s involved, didn’t think he could get it done,” said political consultant Larry Ceisler. “He has an interesting dilemma … where his personal favorability [poll] numbers are high but his job-performance numbers are not as good. He has to be wary of that.”

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