Tags: gizzi | politics | rizzo | mayor

Gizzi on Politics: Rizzo Redux; Wead for Rand; Second Act

Monday, 01 Apr 2013 03:55 PM

By John Gizzi

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Days after he turned 70 last month, former Philadelphia City Councilman and Republican Frank Rizzo Jr. hinted to reporters that he might make a run in 2015 for his father’s old job as mayor — but as a Democrat.

The late Frank Rizzo Sr., Philly’s legendary police commissioner from 1967-1971 and Democratic mayor from 1972-1980, later switched to the GOP and was narrowly beaten in a comeback bid for mayor in 1987. He had just won the Republican mayoral nod again before his death in 1991.

If the younger Rizzo runs as a Democrat in 2015, when incumbent Mayor Michael Nutter will be forced out by term limits, he might be in a primary with the namesake son of another past mayor, City Councilman William Green IV, whose father was elected to lead the city in 1980.

Wead Eyed for Rand Paul Bid
Should Rand Paul make a bid for the Republican nomination for president in 2016, one person likely to be a key adviser is a familiar name in politics.

Doug Wead, former liaison to evangelical voters for President George H.W. Bush, was a key operative in Ron Paul’s presidential bid last year. Most recently, Wead was featured prominently in a profile of the Paul “liberty movement” in Harper’s Magazine.

In discussing how candidates reach out to evangelical conservatives, Wead remarked that, in contrast to his father, the younger George Bush was very good at doing so even though, in Wead’s words, “he may have ruined the country.”

Second Act at Age 87
Ronald Reagan’s axiom — there are second acts in politics — has been given new meaning in Connecticut, where Edith Prague’s second act comes at age 87.

More than 20 years ago, Prague was fired as state commissioner of aging by Gov. Lowell Weicker after she refused to implement cuts in the budget of her department.

Prague’s firing was big news at the time. Two years earlier, when former Republican Sen. Weicker was planning his 1990 race for governor as an independent, he had considered Prague as a lieutenant governor running mate. Prague later said it was a good thing she wasn’t chosen because she and Weicker “would have killed each other.”

After cleaning out her desk, Prague was elected to the state Senate as a Democrat in 1994 and served until she stepped down last year. The 87-year-old Prague was appointed last week by Democratic Gov. Dan Malloy to her old job as commissioner of aging.

Santorum Opposes Sanford in S.C. Primary
Showing no worries about endorsing a candidate in a contested GOP primary, Rick Santorum became the first major Republican figure to back Curtis Bostic in Tuesday’s special U.S. primary in South Carolina’s 1st District.

Bostic, former Charleston County councilman and a Christian Coalition favorite, is in an uphill battle against former Gov. Mark Sanford, whose once-bright political career was demolished in 2009 by admissions of an extramarital affair.

Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, weighed in last year during another GOP contested primary battle, unsuccessfully backing veteran Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch’s opponent in the Republican primary.

John Gizzi is the former political editor for Human Events, working for the conservative weekly from 1979 to 2013. Gizzi is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence, was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002, and has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV talk shows.

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