August 10, 2007

Taxpayer's "Sweetheart" Deal

Ruth Damsker claims "only voters will get sweetheart deals" if she and Joe Hoeffel are elected as Montgomery County Commissioners. She is referencing the created controversies trying to claim that Jim Matthews is somehow as dirty as say, I dunno, Mayor Street perhaps.

The claims made by both of the Democrat candidates for Montgomery County Commissioner are just this side of the land of Oz. They don't have any real issues to resolve, largley because Pennsylvania's wealthiest county is in great shape. Their best tag line - conveniently regurgitated by both the local hit-and-run press and some bloggers - is that Republicans have held onto Montgomery County for too long, and change is needed.

One question which immediately comes to this wacky conservative's mind; why don't we ever hear of the same concept applying to Philadelphia?

Let's compare. On one side we have Philadelphia, run by one party since 1951. On the other side Montgomery County, run by one party for the past 100 years. Take your time to think for a second. Time's up. Any doubt where you'd rather live? Any doubt where political corruption rules the day? Any doubt which county delivers better services?

I checked the record (silly notion, I know) to see how the Damsker/Hoeffel team might treat their "sweethearts". This April, Damsker supported the concept of property reassessment, until voter response squashed that idea. The last order by commissioners to have the county reassessed occurred in 1992, when Hoeffel was on the board. Isolated incident or a sign of things to come?

On the created issue of "sweetheart deals", Damsker voted yes to the same lobbying firm Matthews did; voted yes to the same medical examiner as the republicans did; and doesn't have any noted objection to the job that Rendell gave to Hoeffel after foiling Joe's bid for lieutenant governor.

Wait, what was that you say? A sweetheart job for a political operative? A job that was so critical to the state of Pennsylvania, that it sat vacant for 2 years before Joe got the $104, 431 gig? Yet Joe and Ruth want to hammer the current commissioners for giving a $35k county website job to a friend of Tom Ellis?

Seems to me, future Valentines Day might not be as sweet as the donkey's would like voters to think it will, if they run the Montco machine.

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