We must all agree that immigrants played a major role in Philadelphia. Most of the miners that were at the coal mines back in the day consisted of immigrants, both documented and undocumented. They not only helped in the mines, but they also helped to build the city.
There are people who look at this issue from a different perspective and nowadays believe that immigrants bring a lot of negative things to their lives such as insecurity. As a result, this greatly influenced their decisions during the elections because they deemed them more of a liability. The majority of the immigrants that we’re talking about here consisted of Latinos and Latinas.
On the brighter side, there are those that still appreciate the fact that immigrants mined the fields and made the city of Pennsylvania what it is today. They voted differently during the past elections, preferring Hilary Clinton as a favorite because her policies accommodated immigrants.
Today, mining might not be consistent as it was in the 1920’s, but depending on the people that we put into the city offices, we can try and get it back to that glory. I believe that miners form a great part of the influence in voting in the right people to run the city. With the right people in the office, miners could see themselves getting better mining policies and even their lives improving.
Their lives can improve both at work and at home. Miners look to have good infrastructure and easy access to services, amongst other things. One does not want to come back from a hard day at the mines, or office to bump around on the road, making them even more tired and weary.
Influencing Change in a Diverse Group
According to Philadelphia 3.0, in early 2015, the city council election efforts succeeded. The political organization that mainly consists of business people are the ones that influenced the leaders during the elections. In the process, able people that could bring progress in the business atmosphere were elected into office.
Now, in case you have not noticed, those business people could consist of miners, since mining is also a business on its own. As a miner, you too have the ability to join the group of business men that can influence leaders to make the right decisions when voting in the city officials.
Back then, two incumbents left the council, while four newcomers joined the team, leading to the largest turnover in over three decades. Miners too can join in the dialogue that could influence the future elections. It is all about bringing new blood into the council and the political discussions in general. If a council is ineffective, miners can join in pooling resources to place ads in the media to influence for change.
There is no need to worry about being exposed as a miner, because as a donor or sponsor of such a lobby group, they don’t have to expose your identity. This means that you can influence everything from behind the scenes. Being in a miner in a diverse group, you will find yourself with real estate developers, members of the region’s growing technology sector, and those in the financial, legal and professional services sectors.
How Philadelphia 3.0 Did It
Initially, it was known as the Philly Rising before rebranding to Philadelphia 3.0. At the time, Mayor Michael Nutter was planning to sell the Philadelphia Gas Works to a Connecticut based UIL Holdings, and the city council refused to hold hearings on the plan. This led to the deal going through and causing great dissatisfaction to the business community and other members of the community over the city councils business ideals.
Perelman was appointed to run the daily operations of the council, having formerly worked as an aide to a former city councilman, mainly dealing with tax reform. Philadelphia 3.0 did not focus on the mayoral race, but instead put its focus on the city council. That was because the highest impact could be felt from there. The group focused on change effective and at large races.
Questionnaires were dispatched to candidates to find out their views on various issues. While the Chamber of Commerce came up with 13 out of 15 incumbents, Philadelphia 3.0 was more reserved, going for the sort of people that they preferred to see as leaders as mentioned below:
- J. Hurst - Group Deputy Director
- Brigitte Daniel - a lawyer who was the Executive Vice President of Wilco Electronics Systems Inc., an African-American privately owned cable operator.
- Cynthia Figueroa - was the President and CEO of Congreso de Latinos Unidos.
- Beatriz Garces, owner and practitioner at Garces Dental Group.
- Keith Leaphart - President and CEO of Replica Global and the Brand Manager of design firm Replica Creative.
- Christine Jacobs - formerly the senior vice president of plant operations at NRG Energy.
Philadelphia 3.0 ended up endorsing only six candidates, including one incumbent, the 7th district’s Maria Quinones-Sanchez, Republican at-large candidate Terry Tracy and Democrat at-large candidates Derek Green, Paul Steinke, Isaiah Thomas and Tom Wyatt.
Quinones-Sanchez, Green and Tracy made it to the general election, defeating incumbent at-large candidates W. Wilson Goode Jr. and Ed Neilson. Amongst the three endorsements that won in the primaries, Tracy was the only one not assured of earning a seat in November. This was the first time since 1979 than three newcomers were elected while two incumbents were defeated.
Moving forward, Perelman said the most immediate project would be to push for a charter change petition initiative to require that City Council consider the question of term limits, changing the term in office to 3 years.
As we have read above, other professions have managed to influence the city council elections. Miners hold a major stake in the city, and they too have a right to influence the direction that elections go in order to favor their needs. It all lies in the power of joining other business people and professionals in the city and coming up with a plan. If you would like to further know how elections are influenced by issues surrounding us, check here.