LET ME SPEAK POLITICALLY DIRECT!
When I first came to Chester, Delaware County I was exposed to a reality that was unthinkable, unimaginable and quite frankly OMG, this cannot be true. To find that your most sacred freedom of political affiliation was a bargaining tool and used to manipulate the electoral process and promote abuse of political powers was incomprehensible. Now, I was told I should not speak of this because it was all a “myth.” The myth was (or still is), if you were not a registered Republican, you could not obtain employment, get housing or do business within the City of Chester and Delaware County.
To me, this is called “political slavery.” I came from a state that allowed its citizens to be politically free, so I could not quite comprehend what your political affiliation had to do with getting a job, housing or even doing business. To me, this is the ultimate abuse of political powers. I was also told that the City of Chester and County was a “one party rule” for quite some time, and if you were not on the “right” (republican) side, you would “not get anything”.
Now, let me be clear, I am in no way saying that the 'current political system' is corrupt, but what I want to point out is the state of the City of Chester has not change much with respect to unemployment and services, and the education system, Chester-Upland school district which has the lowest AYP and is being positioned for privatization. Chester is the only city in Delaware County and is still, as described in this 1990 report, a distressed city. My question is why? Especially when it has as its Representative in Harrisburg, the Majority Leader, Sen. Dominic Pileggi.
Sen Pileggi served as Mayor of Chester from 1999 to 2002. He was elected to the Senate in a special election on October 1, 2002. To date, he has served the City of Chester for 13 years or more in some capacity, and still Chester has not made any strides to become what it used to be, or anything close to it. Oh, okay, Chester has Harrah's Casino and PPL Park, but the unemployment rate is still extremely high, general services for those dependent on it to become self-sufficient, were cut by Sen Pileggi this past August. Investments in our school funding was cut drastically and the cities business district is still desolate. My question is, Sen Pileggi, what have you been doing for the past 13+ years?
What I have seen is the Senator's attempt to manipulate the election process, not once, not twice but three times. He tried with the electoral college plan, he failed, he tried again with the redistricting plan, which was deemed unconstitutional, but with the Voter (Suppression) ID Bill he found a targeted approach to disenfranchise voters of the City of Chester and spend millions of tax payers dollars on a problem that they, the state, has admitted, does not exist. I also learned that for nine plus years the City of Chester has been promised a supermarket by its City Republican officials, to include Sen Pileggi. It was my understanding that there were several attempts to close the deal with the supermarket owner operators, builders and developers when contacted by Sen Pileggi and was told, by him, not to come to Chester. In Sen Pileggi's campaign literature it says that he “spearheaded a state budget that cut $1.1 billion in spending.” If he is can do that, why can't he “spearhead” a supermarket for the City of Chester. But let's be clear, the spending cuts were to the investments of our communities, like schools, and services for the poor to become self-sufficient, not on corporate tax reform or closing tax loop holes. He says he didn't increase taxes, but 199 school districts have already announced plans to increase property taxes above the rate of inflation; many more are increasing taxes at, or below, the inflation rate.
Political campaigns are a race for leadership, to prove to voters that you are the person best to represent them, and their interest in the legislature, and should be run on an adult level with tact and dignity. But when you have campaigns like Sen Pileggi's, that play childish games like removing yards signs (which is illegal) this is on the level of political bullying and needs to STOP!
We can no longer afford your services, or lack of services, to the City of Chester, or the 9th District, Sen Pileggi. That is why I am asking voters to vote for me, Patirica “Pat” Worrell for State Senate on November 6, 2012.