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Race For Philadelphia Mayor Gets Interesting

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John Street

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The primary election may be over, but the race for Philadelphia Mayor could just be getting interesting.

Former mayor John Street tells Eyewitness News he is seriously considering challenging incumbent Democratic mayor Michael Nutter, now that Nutter easily defeated Street’s brother Milton in the democratic primary. Nutter won about 76 percent of the vote Tuesday to Milton Street’s 24 percent.

“I believe the city needs a real debate on the issues facing it both now and in the future, and I don’t think the mayor has done a very good job,” John Street said on Wednesday. “I’m one of the unhappy people.”

Street says he will spend the next few weeks talking with advisors about making a run. He changed his party affiliation from Democrat to independent earlier this year, opening up speculation that he might challenge Nutter this fall.

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“I haven’t ruled out running. I haven’t ruled in running,” he said. “I have a lot of people to talk to, a lot of people that I care about.”

Street says he’s also considering an independent run for a city council at-large seat. He says he will do what he believes is best to impact public policy in Philadelphia.

“When I say I will do an options review, it will include a review of the possibility of going back to city council. I can tell you one of the things I look forward to least is going back to City Hall everyday and going to city council,” Street said. “That doesn’t mean I won’t do it.”

Street used the interview as an opportunity to criticize Nutter for lacking vision.

“He says he has preserved basic services. Well, I could have preserved basic services too with two tax increases,” Street said referring to Mayor Nutter’s property and sales tax hikes.

For his part, Mayor Nutter did his best to brush off the possibility of facing another Street, this time in the general election.

“I have no idea what he’s going to do,” Mayor Nutter said on Eyewitness News Wednesday morning. “I’m not going to spend a lot of time speculating on something none of us can really know at this point. What I do know is that I won yesterday.”

Reported by Ben Simmoneau, CBS 3

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