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The jockeying begins in the 7th

Published by James O'Toole on .

While more names are expected to emerge in the next few days, at least two city Democrats have already indicated their interest in running for the council seat being vacated by Patrick Dowd.

His last primary opponent, Tony Ceoffe Jr., said that while he hasn't made a final decision, he is strongly considering another bid.  Mr. Ceoffe, a city housing authority employee, has  ties to the Democratic committee members as chairman of the 6th Ward.   The man Mr. Dowd defeated to win the seat in 2007, Len Bodack Jr., chairs the 10th ward.  Mr. Bodack could not be reached for comment.

Paul McKrell, an ally of Mayor Ravenstahl, is also eying the seat.

"I am interested in running even though  some will say I'm too tied to Mayor Ravenstahl, just like Luke once said I was too tied to my former employer Bill Peduto before he hired me,'' Mr. McKrell said in an email that interrupted a visit to Ireland.  "But I was able to use my position in the administration to advance a progressive agenda on the municipal level, including marriage equality, holding UPMC accountable to its non-profit status and a number of green initiatives. I want to continue working to create a new Pittsburgh with our new mayor as a City Councilor.''

Instead of a primary election, the two major parties will choose their nominees in a vote of the committee members elected or appointed from each precinct in the council district. The 7th District that hasn't elected a Republican in modern memory, so it was not a surprise that Jim Roddey, the GOP's county chairman, said that no candidates had yet emerged on that side. Under the rules for a special election, candidates of currently registered in either major party also have the option of running as an independent.

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