Tom Wolf, the new Democratic front runner in the race for governor, will be in town Saturday to showcase high profile endorsements from county Executive Rich Fitzgerald, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and possibly other local elected officials.
Neither the county executive nor the mayor would comment on the development, which was confimed by figures involved in the discussions with the candidate. It wasn't clear what other officials might join them at the weekend announcement.
Both Mr. Fitzgerald and Mr. Peduto are part of a group of local officials who have had ongoing discusssions about the possibility of a group endorsement from senior Democrats in the region. Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Forest Hills, has been part of those discussions as well. Several figures said they expected him to be there for the Saturday event as well but he did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment on the prospective endorsement.
Sen. Jay Costa, the Senate Democratic leader, said several weeks ago that he favored the candidacy of U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz but was holding off on a formal statement of support in deference to the continuing discussions among his local Democratic colleagues. He said Thursday that he contiinued to view Ms. Schwartz as the best candidate in the field.
The show of support will add to the early momentum for the Wolf campaign, which has rocketed to the top of recent surveys after a heavy round of advertising drawing on the $10 million in personal funds he has contributed to his campaign. While Mr. Wolf is hardly a political neophyte _ he ihas been a major contributor to Democratic campaigns for years and served as secretary of revenue during the Rendell administration _ until now state Treasurer Rob McCord and U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz have received more support from figures in the party establishment.
The Wolf campaign did not respond to requests for comment on the anticipated support.