Thursday, August 30, 2007

LV's Top Ten Elected Officials: "The People Have Spoken"

"The people have spoken. ... F--- them."

Those were my dad's words, live, to a radio broadcaster upon learning he had lost his bid for re-election as Northampton County DA. The year was 1969.

And you think I'm irreverent?

Well, the people of the blogosphere have spoken, too. They've selected the top ten elected officials in the Lehigh Valley with 337 ballots spread out among twenty-eight nominees. Voters were asked to select leaders who make government both transparent and accountable.

Here's the breakdown.

#10 - State rep. Rich Grucela(16 Votes)

#9 - LC Commissioner Kurt Derr (17 Votes)

#8 - State rep. Steve Samuelson (18 Votes)

#6 - A tie between U.S. Congressman Charlie Dent and Norco Exec John Stoffa, with 21 votes each.

#5 - State rep. Craig Dally (23 Votes)

#4 - Norco Councilperson Ron Angle (24 Votes)

#3 - State rep. Joe Brennan (27 Votes)

#2 - LC Exec Don Cunningham (29 Votes)

#1 - State rep. Bob Freeman (36 Votes)

The biggest surprise to me, is to see the left-leaning blogosphere include both Charlie Dent and Ron Angle in its top ten. Charlie Dent, one of the last people nominated, was buried at the bottom of my poll, yet still came out in the top ten. Ron probably paid a few servants to buy computers and vote for him.

But reform-oriented Bob Freeman is no surprise to anyone.


Greendogdem said...

ok now let do the bottom ten

Bernie O'Hare said...

Green Dog, The whole point of this exercise was to recognize that we do have quote a few good elected officials right here in the LV. We're always too focused on the negative.

Anonymous said...

How about Freeman for Congress?

He would certainly be better than Scam Bennett.

Jake said...

Why can't Bob Freeman be drafted to run against Dent? He has wide appeal, always replied to my correspondences ( not like Bosco), seems to have no skeleton in a closet. The fools pushing Bennet are making Democrats look very foolish with a faux candidate with no experience. Freeman has my vote! and seems to have other votes of confidence.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Although Freeman would be a formidable Dent opponent, that's a decision he has to make for himself. Others can't make it for him. Like Cunningham, Callahan and other Democrats, he seems to have no interest in the job.

MAD AS BATS said...

Bob Freeman has more integrity in the fingernail of his pinky that Sam Bennett has in her whole damn body. Bob is interested in taking care of his community, Sam in promoting herself. Bob knows he cann affect more positive change by staying in the statehouse than he could being the 431st 0f 435 members of congress. He's too smart to be in Congress, and Sam too dumb

Anonymous said...

Hey stop calling attention to Freeman. Do you want to make his life miserable?

That's all he needs is to have Joe Long starting to undercut him because he thinks Freeman wants to run against Sammy girl.

Freeman is a good guy. He doesn't need to have to deal with any BS from Long or any conniving moves from Sammy girl.

michael molovinsky said...

bernie, i commented under the norco post because of the row office issue. lvdem, i do not "hate" cunningham, i think he is the most likable, charismatic official lehigh valley has ever had. BUT, i question the substance, i.e. although his courthouse will cost 25% less, its half the building, and now he wants to buy an additional building. its very easy to dismiss an outsiders' observation by saying" he hates him," or "he bashes all democrats."

LVDem said...

it isn't his courthouse... it's the county's courthouse. As in the voters.

You would certainly do well to understand that the voters supported Don's agenda (by a HUGE margin). And yes, that included many Republicans. Again, you are ignoring that bipartisan thing.

I'm not dismissing you, only pointing out that you miss the other people in the room, quite conveniently might I add. Why do you ignore the GOP officials when critiquing gov't? I'm also pointing out that Don Cunningham gets his authority from the charter which is born from the power invested in the county by the voters. In other words, Don gets his authority from the voters, who you constantly dismiss out of hand at just about every turn. It's called democracy.

Bernie O'Hare said...

I don't know the specifics of the LC proposal as well as many others, but Cunningham has promoted fiscal prudence in that project. Originally, the judges wanted all kinds of ridiculous perks, and Cunningham said no. He remained firm even when DA Martin started mumbling about criminal negligence.

Cunningham stood up to the judges, and that needs to happen more often or they'll walk all over you. NC is a perfect illustration of what happens when judges are given too much control, especially in a Home Rule form of government.

So I credit Cunnigham with establishing that he, not the judges, run his county. Stoffa is trying to make that point here, but it's a little harder. Most of the construction was well under way when he arrived.

Cunnigham has promoted the concept of regionalism, which would help cities like Allentown. He has taken important steps to reduce global warming, from the purchhase of hybrids to light bulbs.

But Rs like Cunningham because he has kept a lid on spending. He's doing it in LC, but what impresses me most is Bethlehem. While mayor there, he endured the loss of the BS, but I believe he only proposed one small tax increase in his 5 years as mayor. He kept a lid on things, and did it without hurting the people who provide services.

Forget his youthful enthusiasm and smooth style and look at the substance - it's still very impressive.

Larry Kisslinger said...

"can't we all just get along"? maybe stick to issues instead of personalities? Freeman comfortable where he is in H'burg, is my opinion. Also, maybe even a little gun shy ever since he lost to Uliana for State Senate as he tried to move up? Easily re-won his seat later. I think he is too dedicated to local stuff to consider nonsense that goes on in DC. Imagine having to listen to Nancy and Hillary bull#*%@. List looks very accurate to me, even though unscientific. A credit to BO's blog. I wish Brennan had a few more votes and apologize since I didn't cast any votes. I "do" vote in every Primary and General!

michael molovinsky said...

lvdem, i call it his courthouse, because HIS plan calls for 4 stories at 60 million, while erwins plan called for 8 stories for 80 million. cunningham now proposes to buy the former bank building for additional room, two blocks away, and negating much of the savings. now your saying his plans have the voters mandate and approval, during the campaign he proposed to save money, but didn't provide specifics. lvdem, you approach these discussions as a fan, i think of it as a forum to exchange and discuss other viewpoints. larry k, i think you can disagree and still get along.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bernie, What about Jenn Mann? She is also one of the best.

In fact, I would submit that she didn't get any votes because she is so good and does her job so well without constantly calling attention to herself that she is almost taken for granted.

She makes it look too easy and people just assume she will deliver with no ego driven media whoring.

Anonymous said...

Granted they are all better than Sammy, but Freeman, Mann, and Brennan represent gerrymandered heavily Democratic districts. Freeman and Mann were both unable to win swing voters in State Senate races. Grucela or Morganelli as prolife Casey type Dems would have more crossover appeal against Dent.

Cunningham shifted and increased Bethlehem's debt on to authorities to avoid tax hikes during his terms. Now he is the beneficiary of the unnecessary Ervin/Dougherty 70% tax hike just as he was in the last election.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Jenn Mann came close, but missed the top ten. She has made some mistakes. She is tied to heavily to fundraising PACS and ran a dirty campaign against Browne. But she has has always been responsive with me and I think she is reform-oriented.

LVDem said...

MM, he may not have offered a plan but the voters spoke, saying that the massive courthouse expansion wasn't acceptable. They sent him to the job knowing he didn't have specifics but charged him to find something as an alternative. buying a building (which incidently will fill vacancies in downtown allentown... but seeing as you want allentown to fail in everything that happens, this is bad too) is an option. Truth be told, I don't think it's ever been settled, just proposed.

michael molovinsky said...

lvdem, you wrote "but seeing as you want allentown to fail in everything that happens" . those type of statements get old from you anon type guys. when we were discussing the houses across from central fire station you claimed you lived near there. when bohare posted on wall2wall you claimed you lived near there. lets set the record straight, i have my present(past) and future invested in allentown. i'm there 12 hours a day maintaining and improving, i go to many city meetings. so far you claim to live in two places, and have three professions. maybe you are a contributor, but as far as i know your just a logo on the internet.

NDmomma said...

We'd never heard the live radio story. We'll tell the kids someday when they're no longer minors. Cool blog!

nephew Dan & Jamie O'Hare