Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney is backing Western Pennsylvania U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb for U.S. Senate.
“In addition to liking Conor, respecting him, respecting his intelligence ... I wanna win and I think this is the way to win,” Kenney said at a City Hall news conference. “I don’t wanna be a mercenary about it — all the things I like about him are true — but when I look at the field, as much as I respect everybody else in the Democratic field, he’s the person that can win.”
Lamb, who represents a swath of the Pittsburgh suburbs, has been spending a lot of time in Philadelphia in recent weeks in hopes of building support in a region home to several Democratic competitors: State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta is from North Philadelphia, and Val Arkoosh leads the county commissioners in Montgomery County. Lamb won the endorsement of the city laborers unions last week.
Kenyatta has also been landing some big endorsements in his home city, including from Philadelphia’s largest municipal workers union, District Council 33, and the statewide health-care union SEIU.
Lamb, who attended the University of Pennsylvania as an undergraduate and for law school, said he would “be a senator for Philadelphia.”
“This city is very special to me and I know it is one of the poorest large cities in the United States,” he said. “I would hope to shine a spotlight on the increasing levels of inequality in our society, particularly as they affect a city like Philadelphia.”
He said his frequent trips here represent an attempt to win people from “Philadelphia to Greene County.” He added: “We will only win if we can get working people and middle-class people everywhere behind the same ticket.”
Kenney compared Lamb to the state’s incumbent Democrat in the Senate, Bob Casey.
“He’s from a different area, not necessarily a Philadelphia-loving area, but he has been one of the best senators we’ve ever had,” Kenney said of Casey. “I think Conor and Bob Casey together would be a wonderful team.”
Kenney also backed Lamb’s uncle, Pittsburgh City Controller Michael Lamb, in Michael Lamb’s unsuccessful run for auditor general in 2020.