PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — If you’ve seen a campaign-like RV driving down the highway in your town, it’s the latest entry in Pennsylvania’s race for governor.
“We’re taking this trip across Pennsylvania and coming back across the top of Pennsylvania, hitting 20 counties in nine days,” Ed Pawlowski told KDKA political editor Jon Delano.
Unknown statewide like most of the Democratic candidates who hope to take on incumbent Tom Corbett next year, Pawlowski touts his unique credentials.
He’s been mayor of Allentown — the state’s third largest city — since 2006. At 48 years of age, he’s married with two children with a Masters in Urban Planning and Public Policy from the University of Illinois.
The mayor says, unlike the other candidates, he’s a government executive with a track record who took a city from bankruptcy to surplus.
“We did a very innovative public-private partnership that actually fully funded our pension, reduced our overall costs to the general fund significantly. I don’t think any other city in the Commonwealth or very few in the country have done that. Our crime is down six years in a row. We have a billion dollars in new investment coming into our downtown. We have over 4,000 jobs and this year. When I present my budget, the citizens of Allentown will be seeing their ninth straight year of no property tax. I think that’s a good story to tell,” said Pawlowski.
Pawlowski calls himself a moderate pro-life Democrat who supports women’s health services.
“My mother had me when she was late in life and they counseled her at that point to have an abortion, so I have a personal story here. But personally for me I am pro-life, but I also realize that you have organizations out there that are really critical, like Planned Parenthood, to make sure they are properly funded,” he said.
But the mayor says what really separates him from the other candidates is his experience.
“I’m the only one who has run a government. We have taken Allentown from the brink of disaster, turned it around. We did it in a bipartisan way. I can take that same spirit, same energy that we used in Allentown to Harrisburg and make a difference and get our state back on the right track,” said Pawlowski.