Archive: May, 2011
Most of the votes from yesterday's primary are in, and most of the races have been called — but what does it all mean? Is the Democratic machine still alive and well? What about the Republican machine? Were there any shenanigans? Fights? Cliffhangers?
Worry not, ElectionEar is here to help!
See below for handy links to all of our primary roundup posts thus far, and look out for more throughout the day.
Are you from Mars, and just starting to follow this election? Read our cover story to find out what was at stake.
And then go here for last night's election results.
The primary is over and the polls have closed.
So has the City Paper ElectionEar Ultimate Primary Poll, an an online recreation of most of the ballot (except judges), that had been up since last weekend, and which drew thousands of "votes" from hundreds of "voters."
Many a campaign and campaign manager, we are told, was none to happy about that poll. It was unscientific, they argued; it distorted reality. And, it's true, the results of our little experiment differed in many — though not all — cases from the actual results of last night's election.
But so what? A poll, after all, is a poll — it tells you something. In this case, it seems to portray an electoral alternate universe, in which some votes went wildly astray of last night's vote actual votes, and others fell more or less along the same lines.
Click below for a look at a few highlights:
Before you start crying or cheering that Marge Tartaglione is done-zo, consider this: Provisional and absentee ballots have not yet been counted — plus, some precincts have not been reported — and three big races (including the City Commissioners) are still close.
"You might remember that the official count in the City Council at-large race between David Oh and Jack Kelly in 2007 was not finished until November 21," said Ellen Kaplan, vice president of the Committee of Seventy, via email. "The election was on November 5."
The close races are:
- for City Commissioner, between incumbents Anthony Clark and Marge Tartaglione. With 96 percent of the precincts reporting, Clark is beating Tartaglione by 980 votes. (Conversely, Stephanie Singer, the top vote-getter in the Commissioners' race, seems in like flint.)
- for the 2nd Council District, between Barbara Capozzi and Kenyatta Johnson. With 97 percent of precincts reporting, Johnson is winning by just 72 votes!
- for Republican mayor, between Karen Brown and John Featherman — which is really a race between the old guard and new guard of Republicans. Brown is winning by 59 votes!
Is it possible that some of these races could flip — especially the ones that seem less resolved, i.e. for the 2nd Council District and Republican mayor?
"It depends," says Kaplan. "The closer the race, the greater the likelihood."
*~~~*STEPHANIE SINGER BEAT CITY COMMISSIONER MARGE TARTAGLIONE*~~~~*
That's the biggest news from yesterday, but not the only news.
The primary might not, on the surface, look like much of a voters' revolution. Turnout was terrible — shameful, embarrassing, inexcusable, and all that — and the election was, largely, an incumbent-fest:
- The top vote-getters for Democratic Council At-Large (as of late-night Tuesday) were the five incumbents: Bill Green, Bill Greenlee, Wilson Goode, James Kenney and Blondell Reynolds Brown.
- Nutter won easily (duh).
- Only one incumbent Council member — Maria Quinones-Sanchez — faced a serious challenge, and won handily in the end.
And yet, in some ways, the election was a revolution:
- The victory of Quinones-Sanchez, who lost the backing of local ward leaders, over Frankford ward leader Dan Savage could be seen as Latino voters rallying to ensure representation despite efforts to redistrict them into four separate districts.
- Stephanie Singer, candidate for City Commissioner, smashed forever-incumbent Marge Tartaglione.
- As of late Tuesday night, Al Schmidt, Republican candidate for the same position — and part of an insurgency within the Republican party — had come within less than a half percentage point of incumbent Joseph Duda and will appear on the ballot with him in November.
- John Featherman, another Republican insurgent who's not backed by Republican party bosses, had also come within less than half a percentage point of beating the establishment candidate, Karen Brown.
- David Oh won first (then Rep. Denny O'Brien, Joseph McColgan, Al Taubenberger, and Michael Untermeyer) in the Republican At-Large vote, helping to oust Frank Rizzo, a Rizzo.
- At-Large candidate Sherrie Cohen came close, but not close enough (so far — apparently some votes still haven't come in) to oust W. Wilson Goode, Jr., who won the fewest votes of an incumbent in that race.
- 2nd Council District candidates Barbara Capozzi and Kenyatta Johnson were neck and neck all night. Johnson has emerged on top so far — by fewer a hundred votes — but Philly Clout is reporting that Capozzi hasnt conceded yet.
The moral: Even with a shameful, crappy, embarrassing turnout, Philadelphians can change the establishment, reshape government and make a difference. The city's still run by party bosses, yes — but yesterday proves it doesn't have to be.
Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez appeared to have handily beaten opponent Dan Savage last night, as most of yesterday's primary election results came in.
The victory was hard-won but, for the same reasons, leaves Sanchez in a strong place: She faced opposition not only from Savage, whose strength laid in the white sections of the heavily-gerrymandered district, but also from party leaders in the neighborhoods comprising her base in Philly's ever-growing Latino community. State Rep. Angel Cruz and ward leaders declined to back her — an almost-unheard-of situation for an incumbent.
Now, she can enjoy four more years on Council as independent from party bosses as any candidate, and will preside — critically — over the redistricting of Philly Council districts that will follow this year from the 2010 Census.
If Sanchez is able to change the boundaries of her district to inlclude more Latinos (the city's largest Latino population is currently split between four Council districts), she may be able to retain her seat for some time to come.
We stumbled on this via Twitter: ElectionJournal.org is reporting electioneering at a Philly polling place.
A picture seems to show a poll worker handing out clearly-marked sample ballots. The ballots read, "56th Ward." On the table next to the sample ballots is a political advertisement for a candidate for judge of the Court of Common Pleas, as well.
We can't, of course, confirm any of it immediately, but will post an update when we have one.
You've got four hours to get out, stand up for yourself, and vote, damnit — or else live in the secret knowledge that you'll let [insert most hated politico here] trample all over you with his/her little voting posse.
SO:--> Get your polling place location here
--> Read our exciting descriptions of selected races here.
--> Read our ongoing blogging of the whole shebang here.
--> Read profiles from the candidates who submitted them here. or at Seventy.
If you have trouble, call this number: 1-866-687-8683 (Committee of Seventy)
Judges: There will be a lot of judges on the ballot, and you may not know what to do. We can't tell you; but we can point you to other endorsements:
National Lawyers Guild progressive judge survey
With the exception of a number of startling revelations about judicial candidate James DiVergilis — such as the fact that he can't pronounce the word "ethnicity," that his campaign gave out police "courtesy cards" for campaign donations, or that he told an audience that he's hit people and would do it again ... — City Paper has not, admittedly, done a good job of covering the judicial races in tomorrow's primary.
Neither, we'll point out, has anyone else.
Except, that is, for lawyer Maxwell Kennerly, who points out in an email to CP that Common Pleas judges "are the only judges most Philadelphia lawyers will ever encounter," and who at least gave it the ol' college try and put together over the weekend a guide for voters. It represents, of course, his own point of view and his opinions are not ours. Here's the link.
"Harajuku girls," thanks to Ahd Photography via Flickr
Believe it or not, in addition to the furious online content our enormous staff— both of us, that is — pounds out on the Naked City every day, we also produce the news section of the City Paper's weekly "print" edition.
And in that "print" edition is a very cool little section called "Photostream," in which we publish very cool reader photography — pictures of our beloved Philadelphia, of course.
Most of these pics we glean from contributions to our Flickr account. By submitting, you agree to let us use the pictures in exchange for a credit and the long-lasting glory of having appeared in our pages.
But you can also submit by email to email@example.com.
So submit — and join the awesomeness of it all.
A "mailer" — think giant postcard — from the campaign for Joseph Duda, Republican for City Commissioner boasts Duda's endorsement by the Firefighters Local 22 union.
The problem: Local 22 endorsed his opponent, Al Schmidt.
Mr. Duda could not be immediately reached for comment.
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