Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Allentown's Incredible Disappearing Republicans

Are there any Republicans left in Allentown? That's a question I must ask after looking at Mayor Ed Pawlowski's 2008 contributions from prominent local Republicans. Most are small, but reflect a party in such poor health that popular Congressman Charlie Dent was defeated in the Queen City last November by a lightweight.

Former Republican county exec Jane Ervin, Allentown real estate owner Aris Harris, and former Republican County Commish Cindy Lambert, each made modest donations to Pawlowski.

Quintessential "cover my bets" developer, J.B. Reilly, is part of a private "king-making" group of Republicans. So is Sam Saxton, owner of an Airport Road cemetery; and Roland Sigal, who owns the Tech Bldg. at 11th & Hamilton. Each is part of the "Republican" hierarchy. Each donated to Pawlowski.

Ideologically the biggest surprise is Charlie Thiel, a very conservative R who ran twice for city council, and has been touted as a future mayoral candidate. I'm sure his donation has nothing to do with the fact that his company is the one with the city contract for all those blinking blue surveillance cameras.


Anonymous said...

The Scrotum Head is back the Srotum Head is back!!!

All Hail the Scrotum Head

Bernie O'Hare said...

With hats like that, I don't know why they're not more popular.

J. SPIKE ROGAN said...

I love the guy in the pic on this old post:


I wonder how many Republicans own these strap on hats?


I thought it was a University of Alabama football game. Roll tide.

Anonymous said...

Charlie Theil is now a Democrat.

Bernie O'Hare said...

If that's true, he's a very conservative one.

Anonymous said...

The lack of competition that the R's provide is just as terrible as the leadership that the mayor provides. A true democracy, like a good economy, demands competition. What do we get this year? Tony Philips, a man who wouldn't be in office if he was an R in 2005.

I worry about Allentown, but I worry more b/c there is no viable political alternative. Are there a lot of D's in the city? Yeah, but how close did John Street come to losing in 1999? And the advantage in Philly is a lot better than in Allentown. The lesson: get me somebody who has some credibility and can inspire me to vote for an R. As it is, this D is likely to skip the Mayor race altogether. I won't vote for the lesser of two evils.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear about the death of Charlie Thiel's principles.

Here a guy who was a very conservative R, who ran for city council twice as an R.

If he's become a D I guess he figured if you can't beat em join em.

I'll really be disgusted if he runs for office again...as a D.

I feel the same way about Phillips flipping for his own gain. Neither of these guys moved to the other side over deeply held beliefs. They moved for political expediency.

Anonymous said...

It's a blue area of a blue state that's getting bluer with the influx of already blue transplants from NJ and NY. What we are seeing is a complete purge of any remaining opposition. Rs become Ds or perish. Ds fight each other in decisive primaries because general elections are not where things are decided anymore around here. Losing Ds throw in with Rs because they can't rise to the top of their own party. Rs accept loser Ds because they're already losing and have nothing more to lose.

P.T. Barnum said...

All the smart people left Allentown years ago which explains why the city has no Republicans anymore. Look at other cities that are overwhelmingly Democrat and you get a preview of Allentown in 2020. "Change" is coming and it isn't going to be pretty. But, go ahead, people, keep pulling that "D" thinking you're getting change for the better and you'll get what you voted for - change.