Current law requires Philadelphia politicians to resign their posts before running for new ones, say governor or the state legislature.
That may change now that City Council has overridden a veto from Mayor Nutter.
The so-called “resign to run rule” is part of Philadelphia’s City Charter. Councilman David Oh wants to ask voters to change the charter to give current city elected officials the ability to run for another office without quitting. He said if the voters say yes it would eventually help the city’s political clout on the state level.
“I think for 60 years it has not worked and we have had declining political influence as there is an ever increasing need to be more influential in Harrisburg and Washington,” he said.
Oh said experience is crucial in politics and he contends the existing rule discourages seasoned politicans to try for higher office.
“What will work is if we increase the power of not just one person but the power of our city by increasing the political capabilities of the 24 municipal elected officials and then the mayor can go to Harrisburg and have a better time of fighting for what he has to fight for.”
The question is expected to be on the May ballot.
Many politicians have had to quit one office to seek another, such as Mayor Nutter who gave up a seat on City Council to run for his current post.
Oh’s proposal was crafted to take effect after the 2015 mayor’s race, so it would not help any current members of council who want to take a run at the big office in City Hall.