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Jeff Hornstein would be a really, really, really good Councilman
It is election season around here. In 2007, back when we (Jennifer, Ray, myself, etc.) were just youngsters, with not a care in the world, YPP was a hopping place for elections. This year, with no Mayoral race, and many of the regular writers prevented from writing nearly as often (or as opinionated), this has been quieter. Still, I don’t want to have the entire election season slip away without making a couple of personal comments about the candidates.
The First District race has gotten some mild attention, where there is a race to replace the retiring Frank DiCicco. There is no question in my mind that there is a clear choice here, with a candidate who would be a great, great City Councilman: Jeff Hornstein. I am far from rich, but, I have donated what I can to Jeff, and, after I click post, I plan to do so again.
Why Jeff? He is a progressive running for office who, when asked why someone should vote for him, can do more than say he has the right values, or that he is smart, or that he checks the right boxes on a questionnaire. Instead, he can point to years of fighting for and with working class Philadelphians, for progressive labor, for machine-challenging political candidates, and more. (SEIU, with Jeff as a driving force there, is probably one of two unions in the city that have made impactful endorsements for upstart political candidates.) Jeff would not just bring a new, smart outlook- he would be a progressive organizer, put into a position where he could advance smart ideas to make our city a better place.
Jeff is endorsed by almost every progressive group out there. He does the work. He has the values. When there has been a fight for progressive policies in the city, Jeff has been there. If he wins, he will still be there, but with a much larger platform. He is the real deal. He is worth your support.
Of course, the race has another progressive in it- Joe Grace. Many Philly liberals, along with the past couple of Mayors, like him. He was ED of Ceasefire PA, a crucially important organization that does good work. He knows his way around City Hall. I think he would probably be pretty good at the job.
There is also Mark Squilla. I don’t know a ton about him. That he can so easily unite the South Philly Hatfields and McCoys, after a quick meeting with Bob Brady, is mildly scary, and a win very much reinforces the power of the old school South Philly political powers. Still, I don’t have anything bad to say about him, and his proposed agenda looks generally good. I simply know very little about him, and have no idea what kind of Councilman he would be.
At its core, this is not about the other guys, but about Jeff. When one of our city’s many unsung progressives, who has been doing great, courageous work for years, decides to run for office, I jump.
Time to get out the battered credit card…