PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It was an Election Day atmosphere at the IBEW Union Hall on the South Side.
Several thousand Allegheny County Democratic Committee members are endorsing candidates for races on City Council, County Council, the school board and County Common Pleas judge.
But the party is only endorsing one candidate for mayor.
“Michael Lamb filed for the endorsement along with Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and then the mayor stepped aside so we only have one remaining on the ballot,” said Nancy Patton-Mills with the Allegheny County Democratic Committee.
Michael lamb and Ravenstahl were the only candidates to file for the endorsement before the Feb. 1 deadline.
State Democratic Party Chairman Jim Burn credits Lamb for seeking the endorsement even though odds were against him at the time.
“It’s his reward for showing some courage and showing that leaders lead, sometimes you have to step on to the field of battle even if you know there’s a force on the other side that’s a little bigger than yours,” he said. “Michael wasn’t afraid to make that jump.”
“I think a lot of people did not file for mayor because they thought the mayor, the incumbent, was favored in the endorsement process, so now it would have been wide open if they filed,” Burn said.
Tuesday, March 12 is the deadline for mayoral candidates to get on the May 21 ballot.
Lamb could be one of eight candidates vying for the city’s top job in the primary.
“I’m a candidate myself,” former Pittsburgh Mayor Sophie Masloff said. “I’ve got a lot of encouragement here, so that they’ve got me believing that I could have a chance, but of course that’s out of the question.”
While she joked about entering the race, Masloff would not say who she plans to support.
Meanwhile, armed with the endorsement, Lamb is ready for all comers in the race for mayor.
“There are few endorsements that carry the kind of weight that this does in a democratic primary and I’m excited to have the committee behind me as we go across the city talking about Pittsburgh and the great city that it is,” Lamb said.