Monday, May 12, 2014
Rumor Mill: Cunningham, Marcincin Eyeing Bethlehem City Council
Dr. Terry Marcincin, a Bethlehem dentist and son of former Mayor and long-time City Council member Paul Marcincin, is reportedly interested. So is Lynn Collins Cunningham, wife of former Mayor Don Cunningham. Finally, there's Tom Donchez, the Liberty Hall School grad who became a lumbering fullback at Penn State, after which he distinguished himself at Air Products.
I've been unable to confirm whether the rumor is true. But Donchez, Marcincin and Cunningham are well-respected in Bethlehem, and would have to be considered early favorites.
Reuscher, in contrast, is an appointed member of Council, picked to fill the seat held by Mayor Bob Donchez. In a February interview, she told me she was undecided on running for office. It's unclear to me whether she has any real interest in politics.
Recchiutti, who chairs the City's Democrats, is much more political. An attorney, he was first elected in 2011 in his second try for office. He was the lowest successful vote getter. He outdistanced all Republicans by over 1,000 votes, but is in trouble if a prominent Democrat enters the fray.
Willie, who is very popular in his own right, and nearly won the Mayoral race last year, would seem to be the most likely to survive.
Next year's City Council races will almost certainly also draw Jim Gregory, a PFA offender who should be out of state prison by then. He will lose, but will in the process make himself and everyone around him look like a joke.
In recent months, City Council has needed no help from Gregory in looking like a circus. Council member Karen Dolan used her office to attempt to get special concessions at Illick's Mill, where she was the Executive Director. She has become the focus of an Investigating Grand Jury in the biggest scandal I can remember in Bethlehem City Council.
Dolan, along with Reuscher and Adam Waldron, recently demeaned stay-at-home moms by the way they grilled and then rejected Diana Morganelli, the Mayor's pick for a seat on the unpaid Parking Authority. Morganelli is the wife of the District Attorney. Most recently, Council imposed a completely unenforceable hiring freeze on the Donchez administration.
The Cunningham, Donchez and Marcincin names will likely be viewed as a welcome relief to those tired of seeing public office used for personal gain and political mischief.