September 13, 2016 |
Dan McElhatton could be called the first casualty of labor leader John Dougherty's rise to power. As the City Councilman faced reelection in 1995, Dougherty and his electricians union backed a challenger, Rick Mariano, who at the end of a ruthless and bitter fight came out on top. Fast-forward two decades and Dougherty has repeated the playbook again and again. That has resulted, over the years, in there being Council members viewed as beholden to the union that Dougherty has led since 1993, Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
September 11, 2016 |
Ten years ago this week, a music-venue-that-could opened above a former boxer's bar at the corner of Girard and Frankford Avenues on the border of the then-not-so-hip neighborhood of Fishtown. The opening-night bill on Sept. 13, 2006, at Johnny Brenda's didn't seem that big a deal at the time. It featured four local acts: a neighborhood band fronted by songwriter Adam Granduciel called the War on Drugs ; a solo set by Meg Baird, then lead singer of the psychedelic-folk band Espers; blues player Jack Rose; and Bardo Pond , the West Philly psych-rock band fronted by Isobel Sollenberger.
September 8, 2016 |
Two sides of 'Johnny Doc' Labor mogul John "Johnny Doc" Dougherty's accounts of the accomplishments of organized labor are well-founded ("Workers on parade," Tuesday). Unfortunately, he left out the side of organized labor that he represents - unbridled cronyism, nepotism, and access to unlimited funds, which he uses to the benefit of friends, family, and causes. For example, would kid brother, Kevin, be a state Supreme Court judge on his own merit, and how much is he beholden to his older brother for getting him elected?
September 7, 2016 |
The applause echoed under the I-95 bridge Monday as more than 350 union electricians cheered on their leader, John "Johnny Doc" Dougherty, at a gathering before the annual Labor Day parade. "I'm not comfortable with it," Dougherty told members of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 98, referring to the federal and state investigations of the union. "I'm not happy about it. But I'm not running from it and nobody else should. "It's Labor Day. I want smiles. " And smiles there were, in part because it wasn't raining, which happens so often at the parade that union leaders joke about it. Tropical Storm Hermine went on strike, refusing to do anything other than produce a pleasant breeze for union members and their families, plenty of them marching with pro-Hillary Clinton messages.
September 5, 2016 |
John J. Dougherty, leader of the Philadelphia electricians union, has shaken off FBI scrutiny before. But a decade after federal authorities last tried to build a case against him, Dougherty and his 4,700-member union appear to be in the crosshairs of an even more aggressive legal assault. For the last month, FBI raids on union offices and homes and businesses of key allies have signaled the existence of a multipronged investigation into the influence the union has wielded at job sites and polling booths for decades.
August 31, 2016
ISSUE | JOHN DOUGHERTY A labor and civic leader The media is fixated on the government investigations into Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electical Workers and its business manager, John J. Dougherty ("U.S. targets another Dougherty ally," Friday). Bad headlines always take priority in newsrooms. Dougherty and Local 98 have had their fair share of negative press over the years, yet they not only have survived but have thrived. Dougherty is not only a great labor leader - he's also one of our city's most effective civic leaders.
August 26, 2016 |
The focus of a federal investigation into the powerful Electricians union and its leader, John Dougherty, became clearer this week with the seizure of a computer belonging to an agent of the state Attorney General's Office. According to the search warrant used in the seizure, federal agents are seeking evidence that union funds were embezzled and that contractors were intimidated by "use of economic fear. " The warrant also cites possible extortion by an unnamed public official. The FBI served the warrant Tuesday to gather information about a veteran agent, seizing his work computer at the agency's Philadelphia office, officials said.
August 19, 2016
Jimmy Buffett. Johnny Depp. Nick Nolte. Me. Common denominator? Hawaiian shirts, and they're back in style. Wearing one is a statement. Now that they are "in," the joy-deprived haters must crawl back into their button-down or plaid tunnels. I feel vindicated. Proof they're back was provided July 10 when fashion columnist Elizabeth Wellington announced the return of the colorful shirts (as if they ever really went away). Today is the day to talk about this. It is Hawaiian Shirt Day, always the third Friday in August, marking the anniversary of when Hawaii added the 50th white star to Old Glory.
August 18, 2016 |
Depp, Heard, and $7 million Guess you could say the business has been concluded between Johnny Depp and his onetime soulmate Amber Heard . The couple on Tuesday reached a $7 mil divorce settlement out of court a day before they were due for a hearing. TMZ says Depp will fork over the dough, and his estranged wife will shut down her domestic-abuse case against him. Wednesday's hearing could have added more publicity to her claims that Depp was physically abusive. The pair on Tuesday released their first joint statement.
August 8, 2016 |
Even as union leader John J. Dougherty confronts an extensive federal investigation that surfaced Friday in a spate of raids across Philadelphia and South Jersey, his union is facing an aggressive grand jury inquiry by the state Attorney General's Office, the Inquirer has learned. The state investigation - unrelated to the federal probe - began in February as an inquiry into two violent clashes at a South Philadelphia job site, but state prosecutors have expanded its focus to look more broadly into allegations of a pattern of intimidation by electricians Local 98, according to people familiar with the inquiry.