Pawlowski quits Dems' race, backs McCord for governor

Posted: February 05, 2014

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski dropped out of the Democratic primary for governor Monday, endorsing state Treasurer Rob McCord on his way to the exit.

In his short-lived campaign, Pawlowski said, he had trouble raising the vast amounts of cash needed to fuel gubernatorial ambitions.

"I simply was finding it difficult to run a city and spend the eight to 10 hours a day fund-raising that is needed to run an effective campaign," he said. "Every time I sat down to make fund-raising calls, another issue with the city would come up."

Pawlowski's latest campaign finance reports were not available Monday, but he told reporters at a news conference with McCord that he had raised about $346,000 - well below totals posted by candidates in the top tier. Reports filed Friday by the leading Democratic contenders showed that together they raised more than $27 million last year.

McCord, a venture capitalist before he was elected state treasurer in 2008, is the best remaining candidate to push for creating good-paying jobs and economic development, Pawlowski said.

"We have had some very good talks, and I believe this is the person who can lead Pennsylvania to a new and brighter future," Pawlowski said.

"Mayor Pawlowski and I share a common vision for the future of Pennsylvania," McCord said. "We both believe in the power of education and economic development, and the core need for safe neighborhoods."

Several local officials joined in endorsing McCord at the news conference in Allentown, including Bethlehem Mayor Bob Donchez and Reading Mayor Vaughn Spencer.

The Lehigh Valley endorsements could be helpful to McCord, political strategists say. With the major Democratic candidates in the primary hailing from southeastern and central Pennsylvania, victory in the May 20 primary may depend on their success in cultivating support in other regions of the state.

Along with McCord, six candidates remain in the Democratic race to oppose Gov. Corbett in November: U.S. Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz; York businessman Tom Wolf; Katie McGinty, former head of the state Department of Environmental Protection; Max Myers, a Cumberland County minister; former state environmental secretary John Hanger; and Jo Ellen Litz, a Lebanon County commissioner.



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