May 23, 2023 - Politics

Cherelle Parker silent on police chief Danielle Outlaw

Cherelle Parker holding a press conference Monday. Photo: Isaac Avilucea/Axios

Democratic mayoral nominee Cherelle Parker isn't saying whether she'll retain police commissioner Danielle Outlaw if she becomes Philly's 100th mayor after the general election in November.

Why it matters: Parker had been sidelined with a medical scare since primary day last week and didn't hold her first news conference until Monday.

Driving the news: Parker pledged not to "take my foot off the gas" as public safety remains a top priority, with Philadelphia mired in record gun violence.

  • She said she's committed to restoring the police department back to a "full complement" of officers. There are currently hundreds of vacancies.
  • That she's the Democratic nominee means communities "closest to the pain of gun violence" are "now closest to the power."

Yes, but: Parker shut down talk about whether she'd keep Outlaw as police commissioner.

  • "I will not make personnel decisions on the campaign trail," she told Axios.

Zoom out: Parker was more open about undergoing surgery to extract a cracked tooth in the days before the election. She said she didn't take time off afterward and went straight back to campaigning until her body gave out.

  • She spent the night of the primary recuperating at UPenn's hospital and is now nearing "100 percent," but must have follow-up dental visits.

What's next: Parker wouldn't commit to debating her Republican challenger David Oh, saying she must talk with her campaign about the "parameters" of a possible debate.


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