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Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney says he’ll be happy when he’s not mayor after 4th of July shooting – CBS Philly


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The shooting of two police officers during July 4 celebrations near the Ben Franklin Drive has left Mayor Jim Kenney anxious not to be mayor. Philadelphia City Council members Derek Green and Allan Domb are calling on Kenney to resign after his comments.

Now he does his best to, as the saying goes, put the toothpaste back in the tube.

READ MORE: Sources: Authorities are investigating whether 2 police officers were hit by stray bullets on Ben Franklin Parkway

On Tuesday, the mayor said in a statement that his comments were made in a moment of overwhelming frustration.

CBS3 wanted to know more – what exactly was he frustrated with, what his crime plan is and will he step down, as some have demanded. But we were denied access to the mayor.

“Kevin, why isn’t he available?” Why are you laughing? We want answers,” CBS3 reporter Matt Petrillo asked Philadelphia Mayor Kevin Lessard’s director of communications.

Lessard was low-key, walking away from Eyewitness News a day after Kenney made the controversial comments.

“I wait for something bad to happen all the time. So I’ll be happy when I’m not around, when I’m not mayor, and I can enjoy some things,” Kenney said.

On Tuesday, many people living in Philadelphia said they were stunned to hear the comments.

“He should quit if he doesn’t want to be mayor,” one person said.

“He’s tired, like he just wants to give up,” said another.

“He’s tired of being mayor so let someone else be mayor who wants to do the job now,” one person said.

“There’s a level of frustration,” said former Philadelphia mayor and former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell.

Rendell spoke one-on-one with Eyewitness News. He admitted that there were times when he felt so frustrated that he himself wanted to leave the mayor’s office.

“When I was mayor, I remember saying many times ‘it’s hopeless, we can’t transform the city’. Why am I killing myself? said Rendel. “But I woke up on next morning and I was determined to fight and try to change things.”

When CBS3 knocked directly on the door of the mayor’s office, you could hear what sounded like someone closing the door.

READ MORE: 4th of July shooting at Ben Franklin Parkway leads West Philadelphia organizers to suspend block parties

Instead, Kenney’s office released a statement.

“I would also like to clarify some of the comments I made at last night’s press conference at Jefferson Hospital. In a moment of overwhelming frustration late at night, I said I was looking forward to no longer be mayor. Let me be clear, I am incredibly grateful to be mayor of this great city and for the people who elected me to lead. Cities and municipal leaders across the country have felt for decades years the effects of the pandemic and the growing epidemic of gun violence. There have been so many tragedies in this country lately, and many of us are dealing with the trauma and our feelings of frustration, anger and deep sadness at the issues plaguing our society. I ran for mayor with the goal of helping every Philadelphian reach their potential. As mayor, I feel personally responsible for the well-being of every Philadelphian, and it’s a weight that I carry with me every day, every moment. And I know that far too many residents worry about their safety and that of their loved ones on a daily basis.

“He’s not going to give up. Jim Kenney, I served with him. He was on council when I was mayor, and he’s not giving up. I hope he gets mad and comes up with a plan to do something about it,” Rendell said.

But on Tuesday, we never heard a message from Kenney and his spokesperson declined to give us answers.

“So why can’t we talk to the mayor?” People don’t want a carefully crafted statement. They want to hear directly from the mayor. Will he resign? What is his criminal plan? Why was he frustrated? Petrillo asked Lessard.

Meanwhile, some officials are calling for the mayor’s resignation.

“He showed who he was. If it wasn’t in him he wouldn’t have said it, so that’s how he feels and that’s how I feel,” the rep said. of Pennsylvania, Amen Brown.

Calls for the resignation rushed in on Tuesday as local leaders responded to Kenney’s comments in “a moment of frustration”.

“Obviously, you feel like your time is up. You don’t have to wait, let someone else step in and let a team come in and do what it takes to take care of our city to get us out of this crisis,” Brown said.

Frustrated or not, Brown thinks Mayor Kenney needs to go.

“I think the mayor’s comments were stupid. I told him if you could feel that, imagine how Philadelphians who don’t have the ability to check out feel,” said city council member Cherelle Parker.

From state officials to city council, opinions on the issue have dominated conversations about addressing gun violence.

As he nears the end of his second term, some leaders say only one person can make that call.

“The mayor has to decide what he wants to do. I spoke to the mayor today, the mayor said he’s not going anywhere,” City Council President Darelle Clarke said.

The mayor is expected to speak about the Parkway shooting at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon.

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CBS3’s Matt Petrillo and Jasmine Payoute contributed to this report.


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