Saturday, September 13, 2008

"I would be surprised if they're not already investigating."

From all outward appearances, the grenade Doug Shields tossed across the 5th floor of the City-County building has started something more than just a "small skirmish". It seems like the battle lines are drawn and the troops are lining up in formation.

City Controller Michael Lamb is saying things like, "if the "non-disparagement" clause in the unwritten settlement prohibits Ford from talking to him about an audit of how the URA awards contracts, Lamb will file a legal challenge in an attempt to invalidate it. When asked about federal and state investigations Mr. Lamb said, "I would be surprised if they're not already investigating." Those are ominous signs if you ask me. Foreshadowing for all you poet laureates out there.

In the meantime, Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl yesterday issued the following statement in response to Council President Shields' letters to the U.S. Attorney and the state Attorney General:

"Doug Shields has forgotten that he was sent to Council to do the people's business, not to promote a political agenda focused on hurting me and aggrandizing himself. As he has communicated to others in the back offices of City Council, he is using his public office in an attempt to hurt people politically, personally and professionally. While my administration and I have been getting the work of the City done, cleaning our neighborhoods, fixing our finances, fighting crime, and resolving potential lawsuits to protect City taxpayers, he has been playing political games. Shame on him.

Over the last two years, through an underwhelming run for citywide office, Shields' use of public funds to advance his political agenda, and his erratic and unprofessional behavior on Council, he and his cohorts have embarrassed themselves, their public offices and this City.

Shields' actions are cheap, ill-motivated and just plain wrong. I have full faith that the people of Pittsburgh see right through Shields, to the truth. It is time for Shields and company to stop playing politics and get back to the business of the City."

Say what you will about Doug Shields, you can bet he knows how to make a Mayor's life a living hell via the Council President's office. Remember this guy helped orchestrate the classic O'Connor vs. Murphy battles in city hall. I can bet this will get more interesting, before it gets less interesting.

1 comment:

Bram Reichbaum said...

For my money, Lamb's most interesting statement was that "it's probably a good thing that someone" requested an investigation. Noteworthy because #1 it means he sees the logic and #2 because it's Lamb backing up Shields. It's good to see the stand-up politicos in Pittsburgh backing each other up instead of jockeying for position amongst each other.