Campaign Bits (March 14, 2012)


The Le­gis­lat­ive Re­ap­por­tion­ment Com­mis­sion was rumored to be con­sid­er­ing a March 14 vote on a new map, but the April 24 primary is still ex­pec­ted to take place un­der ex­ist­ing lines.

That day, there will also be spe­cial elec­tions for six va­cant seats in the Pennsylvania House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives.

One of those con­tests will be for the 169th Le­gis­lat­ive Dis­trict seat, formerly rep­res­en­ted by Re­pub­lic­an Den­nis O’Bri­en, who joined City Coun­cil on Jan. 2.

The can­did­ates for the spe­cial elec­tion are Re­pub­lic­an Dave Kralle and Demo­crat Ed Neilson.

Kralle, who worked in O’Bri­en’s House and Coun­cil of­fices, won back­ing last week in a con­fer­ence call among Re­pub­lic­an City Com­mit­tee chair­man Vito Canuso and ward lead­ers O’Bri­en and Joe Duda.

Also on April 24, Kralle will face teach­er John Mc­Cann is a primary. He’ll need voters to push his but­ton for two dif­fer­ent races.

“I’m let­ting people know they are al­lowed to vote twice in the city of Phil­adelphia. It’s not an urb­an le­gend,” Kralle said.

Kralle’s cam­paign of­fice is in O’Bri­en’s former House of­fice on Academy Road.

Neilson, a former elec­tri­cians uni­on of­fi­cial who worked in the ad­min­is­tra­tion of Gov. Ed Rendell, has a cam­paign of­fice at the Grant Academy Shop­ping Cen­ter. He’s already met with po­ten­tial de­velopers for the va­cant former North­east Auto Out­let site, which is across from his cam­paign of­fice.

In cam­paign­ing door-to-door, Neilson is see­ing a lot of people home dur­ing the day, an in­dic­a­tion of the high un­em­ploy­ment rate.

“So many people are home be­cause they’re out of work. It’s sad,” he said.

Neilson, who has hun­dreds of cam­paign signs on lawns, will not re­open O’Bri­en’s former dis­trict of­fice, as Kralle will.

“It’s a little tough for seni­ors to get up and down those steps,” said Neilson, who will look for an­oth­er loc­a­tion if he is elec­ted.


Wil­li­am Dun­bar, a former aide to U.S. Rep. Chaka Fat­tah and state Rep. Tony Payton, is the Demo­crat­ic chal­lenger to state Rep. John Taylor (R-177th dist.).

Dun­bar, a 27-year-old Port Rich­mond res­id­ent, is mar­ried and has three chil­dren. He’s raised $30,000. His fund-raisers have at­trac­ted Payton, May­or Mi­chael Nut­ter and former May­or Wilson Goode.

The chal­lenger has the sup­port of Demo­crat­ic ward lead­ers and said state Rep. Kev­in Boyle and state Sen. Mike Stack are in his camp. Rich­ie An­ti­puna, who was con­sid­er­ing en­ter­ing the primary, is sup­port­ing Dun­bar, who ex­pects the House Demo­crat­ic Cam­paign Com­mit­tee to de­cide in the sum­mer if it will heav­ily in­vest in the race.

Dun­bar was born in the same year, 1984, in which Taylor was first elec­ted. He could be­ne­fit from a high voter turnout for Pres­id­ent Barack Obama.

“It’s go­ing to be a tough race, but the num­bers on pa­per say it’s a Demo­crat­ic dis­trict,” he said. “I’d love to de­bate him on the is­sues.”


The Fraternal Or­der of Po­lice Lodge 5 board of dir­ect­ors has voted to en­dorse 15 can­did­ates, all Demo­crats, in next month’s primary.

The en­dorsed can­did­ates in­clude U.S. Reps. Bob Brady and Allyson Schwartz, state Sen. Mike Stack and state Rep. Brendan Boyle.

The FOP is back­ing Ed Neilson in the 169th dis­trict. The uni­on chose chal­lenger Dan Collins over state Rep. Kev­in Boyle in the 172nd dis­trict.

Lodge 5 is back­ing Patrick Murphy for state at­tor­ney gen­er­al and Eu­gene De­Pasquale for aud­it­or gen­er­al.

Des­pite fail­ing to get the FOP en­dorse­ment, Kev­in Boyle has raised more than $200,000 and plans to take in $500,000. He has the sup­port of the Phil­adelphia Fed­er­a­tion of Teach­ers, AFL-CIO, AF­SCME Dis­trict Coun­cil 33 and 47 and uni­ons rep­res­ent­ing sprink­ler fit­ters, plumb­ers, steam­fit­ters, brick­lay­ers, boil­er­makers, elec­tri­cians, roof­ers, op­er­at­ing en­gin­eers, iron­work­ers, el­ev­at­or con­struct­ors and sheet met­al work­ers.


James “Scoot” Clay is ex­pec­ted to get the of­fi­cial party en­dorse­ment in his primary chal­lenge to state Rep. Tony Payton (D-179th dist.).

Ward lead­ers Dan Sav­age (23rd), Bill Dol­bow (35th) and Emilio Vazquez (43rd) are with Clay, a Frank­ford res­id­ent who is mar­ried with four chil­dren.

Clay’s fath­er, James Sr., is as­so­ci­ate min­is­ter of Second Baptist Church. His moth­er, Frances, erved as pres­id­ent of the Frank­ford Civic As­so­ci­ation be­fore she died in 2010.

A gradu­ate of Smed­ley Ele­ment­ary School, Hard­ing Middle School and Frank­ford High School, Clay coaches bas­ket­ball for Deni Play­ground. His cam­paign is fo­cus­ing on crime, edu­ca­tion, health and eco­nom­ic de­vel­op­ment.


Numa St. Louis, who is chal­len­ging state Rep. Mark Co­hen (D-202nd dist.) in the primary, will ap­pear on Mar­vin Bar­rish’s ra­dio show on Monday, April 2 from 2 to 3 p.m.

The show can be heard on WN­JC (1360 AM) or wn­

The call-in num­bers are 856-227-1360 and 856-232-7077.


Dr. Jill Stein, who is seek­ing the Green Party nom­in­a­tion for pres­id­ent, will ap­pear Monday at 7 p.m. at the Wil­li­am Way Com­munity Cen­ter, at 1315 Spruce St.

The pub­lic is in­vited to at­tend. Stein fa­vors for­giv­ing stu­dent debt and end­ing tu­ition at pub­lic col­leges and uni­versit­ies.

In 2002, Stein ran for gov­ernor of Mas­sachu­setts, tak­ing 3.5 per­cent of the vote in a race won by Mitt Rom­ney, the fa­vor­ite to cap­ture the Re­pub­lic­an pres­id­en­tial nom­in­a­tion this year.

Among the oth­ers seek­ing the Green Party pres­id­en­tial nod is act­ress/comedi­an Roseanne Barr.


A book about three re­cent re­form vs. ma­chine races is avail­able for down­load in all Kindle formats on

John Kromer, Ju­lie Proulx and Andy Den­ison have au­thored the e-book Money, Mojo and Votes: Polit­ic­al Re­form and Elec­tion Real­ity in Phil­adelphia.

The cam­paigns in­cluded in the book are Brett Man­del’s chal­lenge to City Con­trol­ler Alan Butkovitz in a three-way Demo­crat­ic primary in 2009; Stephanie Sing­er’s suc­cess­ful cam­paign last year for elec­tions com­mis­sion­er; and Kromer’s un­suc­cess­ful chal­lenge to party-backed Jew­ell Wil­li­ams in last year’s Demo­crat­ic primary for sher­iff. ••


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