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BILL ROBINSON WITH CHECK BOOK (Photo by J.L. Martello)
Three days after a weekend meeting at the Hill House organized to crystallize support behind a single Black mayoral candidate for Pittsburgh, Allegheny County Councilman William Robinson called a press conference that most thought he would declare himself that candidate—except he didn’t.
Instead, he said any candidate for mayor must have a plan for a Black agenda, and that he would only support such a candidate.
“Whoever the candidate is must have what’s been euphemistically call a Black agenda and one for poor people,” he said. “They should come forward and say what that agenda is. Fiscal stability may be at the top of the list for many, but not for me. Let’s speak to specific needs of specific people.”
Noting that the bulk of his constituents are African-Americans, that 40 percent of the city’s population is African-American, and that 40 percent of the city Democratic Party is African-American, Robinson said their concerns should be addressed.
He then said he, himself, had no such plan and that even if he were a candidate for mayor, which he did not confirm, he would financially back any other candidate that committed to a Black agenda.
“I will give $5,000 of my own money to any candidate who comes forward with a plan,” he said.
Asked further about his place in the race, Robinson said he had no campaign organization in place. Asked if he had resigned his county council seat, which is a requirement placed on council members who declare for another elected office by the Allegheny County Home Rule Charter, he said, “No sir.”