Local Democratic leaders prepare for Obama election effort

June 29, 2008
Tribune Review

From North Avenue, there was little indication of activity at Daniel Styche’s house Saturday afternoon.

But inside the restored stone manse in a west North Side neighborhood that is struggling to come back, Allegheny County Democratic Party leaders gathered with representatives of Barack Obama’s campaign to kick off local organizing efforts for the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate’s general election effort.

The event was one of 700 low-key house parties across Pennsylvania yesterday dubbed “Unite for Change.” Officials are hoping the gatherings generate a synergy that will give the campaign a boost in the critical swing state that went for Sen. Hillary Clinton in the primary.

Allegheny County Democratic Chairman Jim Burn Jr. organized the North Side event. He said party leaders want to being working early.

“The debate is over now and we’re behind one candidate,” Burn said.

Others on hand for the party that drew a handful of neighborhood organizers included Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato, state Auditor General Jack Wagner and U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle.