My name is Andy Szekely and like John Fetterman, who is running for the United States Senate, I was once a small-town mayor. Unlike John Fetterman, I never pulled a gun on someone or attempted to play police officer without any formal training. In 2013, John Fetterman chased and then detained jogger, Chris Miyares, a black man for what he thought was a shooting in progress.
Not only was this action reckless and dangerous, but Fetterman tried to justify his behavior by saying that as the mayor, and therefore chief law enforcement officer, it was his duty to act as he did. I can tell you that every responsible mayor in America would condemn his actions. Additionally, every police chief and every municipal solicitor would condemn his vigilantism as well.
And while the example above is the most egregious action committed by Fetterman while he was mayor, there are numerous other examples of unethical and distasteful behavior. For example, according to Wikipedia, John Fetterman frequently missed council meetings. He retaliated against his mayoral opponent, Jayme Cox, through using his position as mayor to release non-public records that showed that Cox was arrested in 2004. Even the solicitor agreed Fetterman’s conduct constituted “an abuse of his mayoral authority” and violated the Pennsylvania Criminal History Record Information Act. These actions were vengeful and retaliatory and should have disqualified Fetterman for re-election.
Recently, the sheriff of Montgomery County and municipal lawyer, Sean Kilkenny, has endorsed John Fetterman for Senate in a television ad touting his record on crime. There is poor judgment here on two counts: one, Kilkenny is wrong to use the sheriff’s office—especially while wearing his uniform—to endorse Mr. Fetterman and two, as the chief law enforcement officer in the county and solicitor to several municipalities throughout the county, he should know better than to overlook this serious breach of conduct on behalf of John Fetterman.
Not only did Fetterman put Chris Miyares’ life at risk, but he also put the lives of innocent bystanders at risk as well in the town of Braddock. And of course, Kilkenny wearing his solicitor’s hat should also be critical of Fetterman for his lack of attendance at council meetings and his violation of the Pennsylvania Criminal History Information Act. Fetterman was bad for Braddock and Fetterman will be bad for Pennsylvania and the United States. Kilkenny should know this.
From a small-town mayor’s point of view, John Fetterman’s conduct while mayor of Braddock was deplorable with no lasting results. I cannot imagine the outcry if I had behaved similarly during my nine and half years as mayor of Lansdale. His success as mayor of Braddock was as superficial as the Carhartt clothes and hoodies he wears. I hope the public can see the truth through his vanity and therefore put an end to his play-acting politician.