Philadelphia Republicans Officially End Civil War

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Rep. John Taylor, Joe DeFelice To Lead Unified City GOP

by Joe Shaheeli


Almost two years to the week on a dismally rainy day in early June, the City’s Republican Committee found itself at the beginning of a two-year civil war as the result of a decision to “weight” the vote of each ward leader as they gathered for their every four year reorganization.

A group of young leaders had managed to get ward leaders of their choosing elected in a number of wards, mostly where Republicans were few in numbers. This raised the concern of the Republican City Committee and its loyal following of leaders in the some Northeast wards where Republicans were much more numerous. A motion was passed giving a full vote to those Northeast leaders and percentage votes to those in minority wards. Also, some of the new ward leaders were not recognized, setting off two years of bitter acrimony. The state GOP committed itself to supporting the opposition.

STATE REP. JOHN Taylor will chair the new Philadelphia Republican City Committee.

STATE REP. JOHN Taylor will chair the new Philadelphia Republican City Committee.


At this spring’s annual preelection gala fundraiser at Cannstatter, the old-line Republican City Committee Chair Vito Canuso announced his intention to resign, a decision made after he was assured RCC would continue to have the financial support of the State Committee.

Last Tuesday night, the civil war officially came to an end with the installation of new leadership at the same place where it began, at the United Republican Club, Frankford & Allegheny.

State Rep. John Taylor (R-Kensington) was voted in as RCC’s Chairman, replacing attorney Canuso, who had held that position for over two decades. Attorney Joe DeFelice, one of the key opposition figures, was named executive director.

Other changes are expected, with the first among these being a relocation of the RCC offices from its headquarters at 17th & the Parkway to somewhere in the Northeast, possibly in Mayfair.

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One Response to Philadelphia Republicans Officially End Civil War

  1. CONGRATULATIONS … John & Joe!!! As a life-long Republican, I’m glad to see two energetic, loyal, professional & intelligent gentlemen take control of the Republican Party. I’ve known John Taylor for a number of years & his dedication & service speak volumes for the good work he’s done. Being a Mayfair-ite, I know only to well the positive influences Joe DeFelice has had in our community. Best of luck to two great guys. I hope your leadership brings the Republican Party back to where it belongs.

    May 30, 2013 at 10:57 am

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