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Former Philadelphia mayors are backing Rebecca Rhynhart, but can she lead the city?

Philadelphia mayoral profile: Rebecca Rhynhart
Philadelphia mayoral profile: Rebecca Rhynhart 02:16

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Less than a week now until the Philadelphia Democratic mayoral primary, and candidates are making their final pitch to voters.

The race is expected to be tight. 

CBS News Philadelphia is continuing our look at the candidates through the eyes of their supporters. On Wednesday, we sat down with a Rebecca Rhynhart supporter.


"Oh, I've been doing a lot of conversion lately," Yvone Haskins said, laughing. 

Haskins is on a mission to get Philadelphians behind Rhynhart for mayor. Haskins spent decades in criminal justice – and says she met the former city controller while working on Rhynhart's team investigating the George Floyd protest response.

"She was engaged but she listened. She wanted to know what we thought. And we worked as a team. She pulled that, she and her staff pulled that team together," Haskins said. 

Rhynhart was a Wall Street executive before returning to Philly to serve under former Mayor Michael Nutter. She worked as his budget director before becoming the first woman elected controller in 2017. 

Haskins thinks that leadership experience has prepared her for the top job at City Hall. 

"City council people only have a staff of about six or seven people. Rebecca has run agencies," Haskins said. 

"As mayor, I will bring the departments and agencies together and say 'What are the pain points in this process? Why is it taking so long?' And we have to make this faster," Rhynhart said. 

Rhynhart has promised a city-wide emergency on gun violence – cutting red tape for businesses – and targeting what she calls the "open-air drug market" in Kensington. And her ideas have drawn some big supporters.  

Former Mayors Ed Rendell, John Street and Nutter have all backed Rhynhart's bid. But critics have wondered if Rhynhart has the fire some voters crave in a leader. That's not an issue for Haskins. 

"She inspires me, and I'm not an easy believer," Haskins said. 

"She has that leadership ability to stand up and see what's around, to see what needs to be done, and to find the right team," she added. 

2023 Philadelphia Democratic Mayoral Forum 58:15
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