Tony Moreno, a retired cop from Brighton Heights in the North Side, was the first candidate to announce he would be running against Bill Peduto in Pittsburgh’s 2021 mayoral race. In September 2019, Moreno said he was running as a Democrat for the city’s top position and told TribLive, “I don’t have a social agenda. I don’t have a national agenda. I have a Pittsburgh agenda.”
But just a few months before that, Moreno’s Twitter feed (@realsteelmayor) was filled with open praise of Donald Trump, and open contempt for Democrats. From October 2018 to July 2019, Moreno tweeted “MAGA” five times. He also repeatedly referred to Trump as the “Great” President Donald Trump in several tweets.
In one tweet from July 2019, in a quote tweet of Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Moreno wrote that Trump speaks for him.
“The great President Donald J Trump also has a responsibility to protect this country. They want to make it socialist and hate America . They try to impeach him, falsely accuse him and turn against American values. That’s what I would have said. He speaks for me.”
Moreno is currently seeking the endorsement from the Allegheny County Democratic Committee, as is mayoral candidate and state Rep. Ed Gainey (D-Lincoln-Lemington). Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto is skipping out on seeking the endorsement this year.
The ACDC fell into a bit of controversy last year when the committee endorsed state Rep. candidate Heather Kass, who also had past posts showcasing support for Trump. After the Kass endorsement, Pittsburgh City Paper revealed there were also several Democratic Committee members within the county who also praised Trump on social media. ACDC bylaws forbid committee members from campaigning for non-Democrats.
A February 2019 tweet from Moreno includes the phrase “all day Democrat KKK” in apparent reference to a Black face scandal involving Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam.
“How come there are never old kkk black face photos of the Great President President Donald J Trump or any other prominent GOP member? All day Democrat KKK.”