BY JOE SHAHEELI/ Will a son of this city take over the 13th Congressional Dist. soon to be vacated by Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz (D-Phila.), who has set her eyes on the Governorâ€™s office?
This cityâ€™s Democratic leader Congressman Bob Brady (D-Phila.) thinks so, as do a host of unions and party leaders.
Over 250 of them packed the new FOP Hall for the official kickoff of State Rep. Brendan Boyleâ€™s (D-Northeast) congressional campaign. Heâ€™s the out-front candidate for that seat and it looks from here, there will not be any other serious primary candidate from Philadelphia.
Also a fundraiser, the event drew included elected officials and party leaders from Philadelphia and Montgomery Cos. as well as labor leaders.
â€œI am honored by such a strong turnout for our event,â€ said Boyle. â€œThe response has been truly overwhelming.â€
Boyle has a lock on strong labor support. Early on he solicited, and has gotten, endorsements from Bricklayers Local 1, Communications Workers Local 13000, Insulators Local 14, IBEW Local 98, Ironworkers Local 401, Plumbers Local 690, Operating Engineers Local 592, Sheet Metal Local 19, Sprinklerfitters Local 692, Steamfitters Local 420, the Pennsylvania Teamsters, the Fraternal Order of Police and the Transport Workers Union.
â€œI am running for Congress because the working families of Philadelphia and Montgomery Cos. need someone in Washington who will fight for them. Over the next 12 months, we will run an intensive, grassroots campaign and leave no stone unturned to get our message out and reach the voters,â€ said Boyle.
Based on his past performances, heâ€™ll do just that.
WE BAPTIZED COYLE TOO EARLY!
We normally donâ€™t support candidates in any election. We have done so in rare cases for Mayor and Congressman.
But we have no hesitation in saying some candidates are an excellent fit for the job they are seeking. One such case is that of Anne Marie Coyle, who won her Republican Party endorsement for Common Pleas judge in the primary, and pulled out a Democratic Party endorsement as enough voters chose not to support the endorsed ticket and pushed her button.
Being the lady she has been through three tough campaigns, our advertising department made up a â€œthank youâ€ advertisement she requested. We got her into hot water.
We put the title of â€œJudgeâ€ before her name. That is a no-no in judicial ethical circles.
So we apologize for the error. But we do share the enthusiasm of our advertising director for Coyle. Technically, she will be an automatic winner for that position, since she occupies both Democrat and Republican ballots in November.
It would do Gov. Tom Corbett some good if he nominated her to the post now and sought confirmation before the State Senate adjourns for the summer.
FROM A LOW OF 6% TO 15% OVERALL IN PA.
Across the Commonwealth, in a zigzag fashion that ran from a desperately, pathetic low 6% participation in Philadelphiaâ€™s municipal primary to as low as 20% in some areas of the state, participation in last Tuesdayâ€™s municipal primaries averaged around 15%.
According to the Pennsylvania Dept. of State, 511,152 Democrats voted in the race for Pennsylvania Superior Court out of 3,467,761 Democrats registered.
If one took in the third parties or independents, which number 880,000, not counted, last Tuesday was missing voters in super numbers to set a new low-turnout record.
That low turnout from Philadelphia did in Judge Joe Waters, who lost his Superior Court nomination bid to Judge Jack McVay, even though Waters had the partyâ€™s endorsement statewide. This showed how bad the Philadelphia turnout was and the damage it does when our favorite sons are challenged by anyone from the Allegheny-Westmoreland region in the Southwest.
Philadelphia has 50% more registered Democrats than Allegheny Co. McVay got over 91,000 votes from his home base (87%) to 51,000 votes for Waters in Philly (88%). McVay benefited from a contested mayoral primary.
McVay will carry the Democratic banner against Cumberland Co.â€™s Republican Vic Stabile, who ran unopposed in the Republican primary.
â€œVic Stabileâ€™s extensive legal experience, coupled with his strong record of community involvement, makes him an exceptionally qualified candidate for the Superior Court. Vic continues to crisscross our Commonwealth with unparalleled vigor and I look forward to working towards victory this November,â€ Pennsylvania GOP Chairman Rob Gleason said in a congratulatory statement.
Regionally, this could set up a duel between metropolitan Pittsburgh and metropolitan Harrisburg. If the feisty Pittsburghers stay true to their aggressive local loyalism, that will bode well for the Democrats in this fall race.
A Pennsylvania Superior Court judge serves a 10-year term and, unlike a Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice or Commonwealth Court judge, rarely hears cases of importance to politicos.
YOUNG DEMOCRATS CONVENE IN SAN ANTONIO
Young Democrats of Americaâ€™s 2013 Biennial National Convention will be held in San Antonio, Tex., Aug. 8-11 with 1,000 Young Democrats expected to attend from all 50 states. It will be held at the Marriott River center in downtown San Antonio.
YDA national officer elections for the 2013-15 term will also be held on Sunday, Aug. 11.
Â NONPROFIT ADS UNDER PROBE
State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) is wondering how nonprofit groups can spend big bucks in advertising without having to file any kind of report.
So heâ€™s scheduling a hearing Jun. 5 to discuss how to rein in those groups, especially since Gov. Tom Corbett has taken many of those hits. Heâ€™s wondering where the enforcement is.
The Dept. of State, however, says the group in question appears to be following the law. Metcalfeâ€™s concerns were spurred by an anonymously funded group filing for 501(c)4 status that calls itself â€œPennsylvanians for Accountability,â€ which is running advertisements critical of Corbettâ€™s budget policies and criticized Republicans in four House races last fall.
U.A.W. ENDORSES DAYLIN LEACH
The United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America endorsed Daylin Leach for Congress in Pennsylvaniaâ€™s 13th Congressional District.
State Sen. Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery) is running for Congress for Pennsylvaniaâ€™s 13th Congressional District, which covers parts of Northeast Philadelphia and Montgomery Co. IncumbentÂ Schwartz has announced she will not be seeking reelection to Congress.
EMILY’S LIST FAVORS ALLYSON FOR GUV
Gubernatorial candidate Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz has picked up support from EMILYâ€™s List PAC, which supports pro-choice Democratic female candidates. She has also been endorsed early by United Steelworkers Local 10-1.
Emilyâ€™s List was smart to do some early polling which showed Schwartz to be a top contender. They figure an early endorsement will draw others in quickly, since Kathy McGinty, the only other woman in the race, is still gearing up.
Another poll, by Quinnipiac, had Schwartz and Joe Sestak in a tie. Now, with him running against US Sen. Pat Toomey instead, she was an easy choice.
They also arenâ€™t interested in males, which eliminated for consideration John Hanger, Tom Wolf and Rev. Max Myers.
VOTER-I.D. CHALLENGE TO PROCEED IN COURT
A state judge removed five plaintiffs from the legal challenge of Pennsylvaniaâ€™s voter-identification law but allowed the overall lawsuit to go on.
Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson agreed with Corbett Administration lawyers the five aggrieved voters â€” including lead plaintiff Vivian Applewhite of Philadelphia â€” should no longer be allowed to challenge the law. They have since obtained acceptable IDs since filing their challenge of the law a year ago. He spared two other challengers.
Gov. Tom Corbett signed a GOP bill in March 2012 requiring voters to present photo identification at the polls. The seven voters filed suit with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union the same month, arguing it would lead them to be disenfranchised. The courts waived the ID requirement for the November 2012 election and the May 21 primary in advance of further argument this summer.