Tonight, as I was getting ready to toss this morning’s dead tree Philadelphia Inquirer into the recycle bin, I glanced at an article by reporter Jacqueline Urgo about a bill that Senate President Steve Sweeney is sponsoring that would prohibit shore towns from charging for beach tags if they receive state or federal aid for Sandy reconstruction. Something caught my eye.
When describing the sponsors of the bill, Urgo writes:
Sweeney, a liberal Democrat from South Jersey, and [Michael] Doherty, a conservative Republican from North Jersey, are an odd political pair. (emphasis mine)
If, in the minds of the Inquirer reporters, Sweeney is a liberal Democrat, then I’m a prima ballerina. As Senate President, Sweeney relegated the real liberal senators to the back bench, voted for the Christie pension/benefit “reform”, and is the epitome of a conservative Democrat.
Don’t get me wrong. I like Steve Sweeney. He’s always been accessible to Blue Jersey for interviews and has formed a partnership with a real liberal Democrat (Loretta Weinberg), and if he wins the nomination for governor, I’d vote for him in a heartbeat even though we disagree in many areas.
Sure, he’s been at the forefront of marriage equality. But so has Ted Olson been on the national level, and no one would accuse Olson as being “liberal.”
It’s a shame that the Inquirer (partially owned by South Jersey Democratic Political Boss George Norcross III) can get away with labeling Sweeney as a “liberal” just to print a clever turn of words in his alliance with Doherty. Hopefully, the editors will be more careful next time.