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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, December 21, 2015

Senatorial Candidate John Fetterman Visits Allentown

U.S, Senatorial candidate John Fetterman had a very friendly reception at the Allentown Brew Works on Saturday night. Most were there to cheer for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Presidential Debate being shown on the big screen later that evening. You might say Fetterman was the undercard.

In person, he's just as big as he looks in video. He's the kind of guy I'd expect to see in a bar, but he looks more like an NFL lineman than a community organizer. I'd expect to see him at Big Woody's scarfing wings or Stahley's inhaling a few dozen steamed clams, not at a pub that makes and serves hand-crafted ales. I'd expect to hear him talk about the Eagles or the Steelers, not income disparity. With his tattooed arms, he might be even be a retired member of the Warlock or Pagan motorcycle gang, not someone who refurbished a bicycle and brings it to a lady who kicked heroin and needs transportation to and from her job.

Those tattoos, incidentally, have a story. On one arm is the Braddock zip code, where he is Mayor. On the other arm, he has the date of every person killed since he assumed office to a mostly ceremonial position after winning by one vote in 2005.

That one vote, incidentally, was a provisional ballot that counted.

Fetterman is originally from a rather well-to-do and Republican family in York."I'll be the first Democrat they ever voted for," he joked.

He night have been one of those Republicans himself but for a life-changing event during his last year in college, when his best friend died in an automobile accident. Fetterman joined Big Brothers and then ultimately went to work for Americorps. He worked in Pittsburgh and went from there to Braddock.

In just the last 13 years, Braddock has lost 26% of its population. It was a steel mill town and now has a population of about 2,100, not much larger than West Easton. It's 73% black has a per capita income of just $12,627.

His agenda is what I'd call working-class liberal, and his argument is that he's the only Democrat who can beat Pat Toomey. He's pro-Obama, pro-Obamacare, and favors a more compassionate view towards immigration. But he's also a gun owner, actually took his shotgun to respond to a robbery in his community and believes any gun reform needs to be based on a scientific study as opposed to emotion. He supports the legalization of marijuana, but decries the heroin epidemic.

His over-riding theme is inequality, whether it is in wages or living conditions.

I'm not crazy he attended the Pa Society Gala. because, as he said, that was where the "Pennsylvania political universe" is. Last time I checked, the Pa political universe is in Pennsylvania, and consists mostly of the very people who elected him, not the oyster-eating, tuxedo-wearing aristocrats.

Though he's very outspoken on domestic matters, he offered no comments about foreign policy and no one bothered to ask him any questions. That is the Achilles heel of both the Democratic party, President Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Fetterman has also been attacked for failing to file the required financial disclosure, but he claims it's on its way.

After giving his speech, Fetterman was soon back on the road for the five-hour trip to Braddock. He and his wife, a Brazilian immigrant, are the parents of three children.

Fetterman is running against Joe Sestak and Kathleen McGinty for the Democratic nomination in next year's race for the U.S. Senate. Allentown Mayor Edwin "Fed Ed" Pawlowski has suspended his campaign.

The presumptive Republican nominee is Pat Toomey.


Anonymous said...

Anyone, anything other than Toomey. The guy is more of an embarrassment and big money puppet than Rick Santorum. Santorum was just a right wing religious nut, Toomey is a wall street money man that doesn't give a shit about people.

Anonymous said...

Simply put, Toomey is a toolmey!

Peter J.Cochran said...

I wish somebody would address the Pennsylvania real estate tax exemption based on the anachronistic historical premise that private institutions -statutary privileged institutions or, so called --'charitable' are off the hook.

Anonymous said...

another dem joke

Unknown said...

I was raised in Braddock, PA and Beltzhoover, PA.

Alfonso Todd

Bernie O'Hare said...


Anonymous said...

Guy looks like The Big Show.

Anonymous said...

@Peter J. Cochran:
Agreed. For example, St. Luke's pays ZERO real estate tax on the main Fountain Hill hospital building and parking deck, which has an assessed value of almost $150 million. With the way they (like LVHN) are buying up every medical practice in the valley, they can certainly afford to pay their fair share. That would be a considerable annual windfall to the borough of Fountain Hill.

Anonymous said...

Democrats worked hard to get rid of Santorum. We got Bob Casey, Jr.

Now Democrats want to get rid of Toomey. This guy looks like a bouncer in a bar

Next year Democrats want to give us a choice between a Communist and a Liar for President.

How much insanity can the people of Pennsylvania take ?

Peter J.Cochran said...

Anon 11;53 but Easton is paying taxes Lafayette College pays zip in comparison to help shoulder the already wealthy privileged,yet expect us peons to pay they freight after the tax free 22 percent of the land mass here in the venue. House Crap- they should be required to send it in and charge their constituent legacy students the fee like any other business has to .

Anonymous said...

anon 2:04 and then there is Trump and Cruz. Cruz show us your birth certificate.

Anonymous said...

This guy sticks out like a turd in a punch bowl at a black tie affair........

Please get him a glass of reality and a bus ticket back to Braddock.....
He has NO chance of ever winning and is just embarrassing himself. He should focus on his elected duty of assisting his citizens in the shit hole he is an elected official.

Unknown said...

Whoever said Fetterman looks like a bouncer may have offered up a prime endorsement. Have you liked at Congress lately? Both Houses!! I'd say a bouncer is just what is needed, and fast!!!
He's got my vote.