Don’t forget to vote
Campaign 2014 promises to be an exciting one.
Locally, there will be competitive Democratic primaries in the 174th and 202nd legislative districts, the 2nd Senatorial District and the 13th Congressional District. The 13th’s current representative, Allyson Schwartz, is part of a crowded primary for governor. And state Sen. Mike Stack is among a bunch of hopefuls for lieutenant governor. But before we get to next May, there is a pretty big election on Tuesday.
Pennsylvanians will elect a judge to Superior Court. The candidates are Republican Vic Stabile and Democrat Jack McVay for a seat that often serves as a stepping stone to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
City voters will elect seven judges to Common Pleas Court. There are nine candidates. Northeast residents Anne Marie Coyle, Joe Fernandes and Dan McCaffery are virtual shoo-ins. Judge Ken Powell needs to win to stay on the bench following an appointment by the governor. All agree he is supremely qualified, but he has one drawback — he’s a Republican in a town where more than half the voters like to ignore issues and push the straight Democratic button. Citizens fed up with both major parties can cast a protest vote for a Libertarian candidate.
The incumbent district attorney and city controller are seeking new four-year terms. D.A. Seth Williams faces Danny Alvarez, who has put fighting public corruption at the top of his agenda. Controller Alan Butkovitz could be eyeing a mayoral run in 2015, but first must contend with Terry Tracy.
More than 20 judges will be seeking retention to the Supreme, Commonwealth, Common Pleas and Municipal courts. The big name is Supreme Court Chief Justice Ron Castille, a Rhawnhurst resident and former district attorney. Castille, whose 1989 re-election as D.A., marked the last time a Republican candidate won citywide, will turn 70 in 2014 and have to retire at the end of the year, assuming he is retained.
The turnout for the May primary was a miserable 9 percent.
“Not even one in 10 eligible Philadelphians voted in the primary,” city elections commissioner Stephanie Singer lamented last week at a meeting of the Rhawnhurst Naturally Occurring Retirement Community.
Do your part to at least get us in double digits. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. ••