An amazing first in Philadelphia politics will be occurring tonight at the United Republican Club in the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia.
The Republican City Committee has decided to open up its citywide ward meeting to all Philadelphians, Chairman John Taylor told me via telephone this afternoon. The meeting will primarily address the selection of a candidate for the City Council At-Large seat made available by Democratic Councilman Bill Green's resignation. Green was confirmed last month as Gov. Tom Corbett’s appointee to become the chairman of the School Reform Commission.
While the floor will be open to nominations, it’s widely expected that West Philadelphia ward leader Matthew Wolfe will be nominated as the GOP’s special election candidate.
In a private message sent to me this afternoon that Wolfe gave me permission to publish, Wolfe said, “The Republican City Committee meeting tonight is open to the public, including press. Since John Taylor became the Chairman, he has run a much more open organization, frankly discussing both our strengths and weaknesses. We are looking to engage Republicans in the process and use an energized party to challenge the Democrats who have run this city into poverty for several generations. A strong Republican Party is essential to a strong city.”
Northeast Philly state Rep. Ed Neilson was selected by the Democratic City Committee last week to be the party’s nominee.