The operative word
I consider it a milestone in my efforts for public reform to find myself labeled a "political operative" by Morton Coleman, himself one of the region's premier political operatives who, as director of the University of Pittsburgh's Institute of Politics and now its director emeritus, has played a pivotal role in implementing public policies set by the Institute's close ally, the Allegheny Conference ["Open Season," July 16]. To what do I owe this? It can't be the nearly 19,000 votes I got for County Council At-large last fall; "operatives" stay behind the scenes and aren't candidates. Could it be that the proposed Open Government Amendment to the Pittsburgh City Charter -- which I authored to incorporate the concerns of numerous citizens -- will increase accountability and meaningfully engage the public in the generation of public policy, thus challenging the elite hand of the Allegheny Conference?
I take it as a testament to the merit and quality of my work that the only way to disparage the amendment has been to cast aspersions on me personally. Though [his remarks are] pejorative, I'm nonetheless honored that Mo Coleman should consider me in his league as an influence on public policy.
-- David Tessitor, North Side