Northeast Times

Voting about to begin in key races across the Northeast

North­east voters will be go­ing to the polls on Tues­day to nom­in­ate can­did­ates for state rep­res­ent­at­ive, state sen­at­or, gov­ernor, lieu­ten­ant gov­ernor and the U.S. House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives.

In ad­di­tion, they will choose a new mem­ber of City Coun­cil.

Also, they will de­cide on three pro­posed changes to the Home Rule Charter.

The mar­quee match­up is in the Demo­crat­ic primary in the 13th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict. Demo­crat­ic Rep. Allyson Schwartz is run­ning for gov­ernor.

The four Demo­crat­ic can­did­ates are state Sen. Daylin Leach, state Rep. Brendan Boyle, Dr. Val Arkoosh and former con­gress­wo­man Mar­jor­ie Mar­gol­ies.

Mar­gol­ies served in the U.S. House in 1993-94. She was the early fa­vor­ite be­cause of her name re­cog­ni­tion. In her one term, she cast the de­cid­ing vote for Pres­id­ent Bill Clin­ton’s eco­nom­ic plan, which in­cluded tax hikes, and she lost her seat in the next elec­tion.

Sup­port­ers of the plan say it led to an eco­nom­ic ex­pan­sion.

The former con­gress­wo­man’s son Marc is mar­ried to Chelsea Clin­ton. Bill Clin­ton hos­ted a fun­draiser for Mar­gol­ies last month at a Cen­ter City hotel. Hil­lary Clin­ton ap­peared last Thursday at a New York fun­draiser for Mar­gol­ies.

Also last week, Mar­gol­ies was pro­filed by CNN’s Glor­ia Bor­ger, who fol­lowed the can­did­ate to her Rhawn­hurst cam­paign of­fice and a vis­it to a Rus­si­an-Amer­ic­an adult day care in Somer­ton.

Mar­gol­ies has the back­ing of Mont­gomery County Com­mis­sion­ers Josh Sha­piro and Leslie Richards and Mont­gomery County party boss Mar­cel Groen. She also has the sup­port of five of the 14 ward lead­ers in the Phil­adelphia por­tion of the dis­trict.

However, Boyle is con­sidered a strong con­tender be­cause he is the only Phil­adelphi­an in the race.

Like Mar­gol­ies, Leach and Arkoosh live in Mont­gomery County. Leach and Arkoosh are also factors be­cause of the large amount of money they have raised.

The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

••

The Phil­adelphia In­quirer en­dorsed Arkoosh, call­ing her an “able ad­voc­ate for health-care re­form.”

“Her ex­per­i­ence with fed­er­al health policy and as a prac­ti­tion­er gives her ex­pert­ise in an area where clear think­ing is sorely needed. She also has con­sid­er­able un­der­stand­ing of eco­nom­ic, en­vir­on­ment­al, and oth­er is­sues,” the ed­it­or­i­al said.

The news­pa­per said Boyle “shows great po­ten­tial but needs season­ing.” It called Leach “a fiery fight­er for lib­er­al if some­times lost causes.”

The pa­per said Mar­gol­ies has run a weak cam­paign “that at times sug­ges­ted a sense of en­ti­tle­ment to her old of­fice.”

As for Arkoosh, the pa­per wrote that she un­der­stands the ne­ces­sity as well as the flaws of Obama­care.

“Arkoosh would be an in­formed voice in Con­gress, and she has shown an abil­ity to work with oth­ers and ac­com­plish much,” the ed­it­or­i­al con­cluded.

••

Clean Wa­ter Ac­tion, a na­tion­al en­vir­on­ment­al or­gan­iz­a­tion, en­dorsed Daylin Leach in the 13th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict Demo­crat­ic primary.

In mak­ing the en­dorse­ment, the group poin­ted to Leach’s le­gis­lat­ive re­cord ad­voc­at­ing for and sup­port­ing stew­ard­ship of Pennsylvania’s en­vir­on­ment and pro­tect­ing pub­lic health. One of Leach’s first le­gis­lat­ive pro­pos­als, which be­came law, man­dated Pennsylvania’s Gen­er­al Ser­vices re­quire a cer­tain per­cent­age of the state’s vehicle fleet to in­clude en­ergy-sav­ing hy­brid vehicles.

“Clean Wa­ter Ac­tion could not be any prouder to en­dorse a true cham­pi­on on the en­vir­on­ment,” said Myron Arnowitt, Pennsylvania dir­ect­or for Clean Wa­ter Ac­tion. “Time after time, Sen. Leach has been there for us and the people of the com­mon­wealth when it coun­ted for cru­cial en­vir­on­ment­al votes and show­ing lead­er­ship at the state Cap­it­ol. If Daylin’s le­gis­lat­ive ac­com­plish­ments and what he fights for in the U.S. Con­gress are any­thing like his re­cord in the Gen­er­al As­sembly, Pennsylvania will be well served by Leach in the U.S. House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives.”

Brooks Mount­castle, East­ern Pennsylvania dir­ect­or for Clean Wa­ter Ac­tion, said Leach will be im­port­ant in the fight to pro­tect clean wa­ter.

“Daylin is ex­actly who we need in Con­gress fight­ing for us. Our en­vir­on­ment­al laws are un­der as­sault by many in Con­gress who take their march­ing or­ders from Big Oil and Big Coal, which threaten our wa­ter, air and wild­life. Daylin’s voice as a strong ad­voc­ate for clean wa­ter is long over­due in Con­gress,” Mount­castle said

Leach’s en­vir­on­ment­al is­sues that he wants to fo­cus on if elec­ted are clos­ing loop­holes en­joyed by the nat­ur­al gas drilling in­dustry, tack­ling glob­al cli­mate change and ex­pand­ing do­mest­ic re­new­able en­ergy pro­duc­tion.

Leach has fought against ef­forts to open state forests to more drilling and has sup­por­ted le­gis­la­tion that would make it harder, not easi­er, to drill there. He re­ceived a 100-per­cent vot­ing re­cord from Clean Wa­ter Ac­tion in the last two state le­gis­lat­ive ses­sions, in­clud­ing key votes on Mar­cel­lus Shale gas drilling and clean wa­ter pro­tec­tions.

Mean­while, the Vote Kids Ac­tion Fund also en­dorsed Leach.

As a state le­gis­lat­or, Leach has sup­por­ted pub­lic schools, zero-in­terest loans for young people to at­tend Pennsylvania’s col­leges and uni­versit­ies, ju­ven­ile justice re­form and paid fam­ily leave.

“We need more men and wo­men in Con­gress who have the right pri­or­it­ies for Amer­ica’s chil­dren and work­ing fam­il­ies. Sen­at­or Leach’s sup­port for a real liv­ing wage of $12 per hour, the pres­id­ent’s pre-kinder­garten ini­ti­at­ive, back­ground checks for all gun pur­chases, and for a budget that fully funds after-school pro­grams, child ab­use pre­ven­tion and oth­er chil­dren’s pro­grams shows he will make the right choices in the United States House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives,” said Vote Kids Ac­tion Fund pres­id­ent Mi­chael Petit.

••

The In­de­pend­ence Hall Tea Party PAC has en­dorsed Re­pub­lic­an Matt Wolfe for a Phil­adelphia City Coun­cil at-large seat in Tues­day’s spe­cial elec­tion.

Wolfe faces Demo­crat­ic state Rep. Ed Neilson and Liber­tari­an Nikki Al­len Poe.

“The In­de­pend­ence Hall Tea Party, with thou­sands of ad­her­ents in the Delaware Val­ley, is en­dors­ing Matt Wolfe be­cause of his com­mit­ment to bring­ing fisc­al re­spons­ib­il­ity to

Phil­adelphia city gov­ern­ment,” said PAC pres­id­ent Don Adams.

Wolfe is a former Pennsylvania deputy at­tor­ney gen­er­al and a gradu­ate of the Uni­versity of Pennsylvania and the Vil­lan­ova Uni­versity School of Law.

“Matt Wolfe is seek­ing to re­duce spend­ing and taxes - in­clud­ing the im­ple­ment­a­tion of busi­ness and wage tax cuts - in or­der to stim­u­late growth in the city’s private sec­tor,” Adams said. “He un­der­stands that a grow­ing private sec­tor is key to re­vital­iz­ing the eco­nomy, cre­at­ing jobs and sta­bil­iz­ing neigh­bor­hoods. In ad­di­tion, Matt knows just how crit­ic­al it is to en­act pen­sion re­form for re­tir­ees and - in the area of edu­ca­tion­al re­form - school choice for our city’s chil­dren.”

Wolfe said Phil­adelphia is burdened by op­press­ive tax rates, ir­ra­tion­al tax struc­ture, cor­rup­tion, mis­man­age­ment and mis­placed pri­or­it­ies.

The can­did­ate is also ur­ging a “No” vote on a pro­posed change to the Home Rule Charter that would al­low city elec­ted of­fi­cials to keep their jobs while seek­ing a high­er of­fice.

“Why should tax­pay­ers pay the salary of an elec­ted of­fi­cial who is run­ning full-time for an­oth­er of­fice?” Adams asked.

••

Katie Mc­Ginty, a Demo­crat­ic can­did­ate for gov­ernor, has pro­posed a plan to re­vital­ize Pennsylvania com­munit­ies by provid­ing in­creased state sup­port for loc­al eco­nom­ic de­vel­op­ment pro­jects, green com­munity pro­jects, the re­devel­op­ment of aban­doned prop­er­ties and re­forms to mu­ni­cip­al pen­sions.

“Too many bor­oughs, towns and neigh­bor­hoods throughout the com­mon­wealth have too many aban­doned build­ings, dis­tressed down­towns and too few parks and green spaces for fam­il­ies to en­joy. Un­der a Mc­Ginty ad­min­is­tra­tion, we are go­ing to in­vest in com­munit­ies to make them more liv­able and at­tract­ive for res­id­ents and busi­nesses,” said Mc­Ginty, a Rhawn­hurst nat­ive and gradu­ate of Re­sur­rec­tion of Our Lord Gram­mar School and St. Hubert High School.

To help dis­tressed com­munit­ies, Mc­Ginty - former sec­ret­ary of the state De­part­ment of En­vir­on­ment­al Pro­tec­tion - pro­poses a com­munity re­vital­iz­a­tion bond is­sue that would provide $300 mil­lion in state fund­ing to in­crease sup­port for mu­ni­cip­al land banks to buy and re­devel­op aban­doned and blighted prop­er­ties; es­tab­lish a “Green Com­munit­ies Fund” to cre­ate parks, gre­en­ways, bike paths and open spaces; and provide loan guar­an­tees for com­munity de­vel­op­ment banks to ex­pand sup­port for loc­al eco­nom­ic de­vel­op­ment pro­jects.

In ad­di­tion, Mc­Ginty pro­poses re­tool­ing the Re­devel­op­ment As­sist­ance Grant pro­gram to sup­port loc­al re­vital­iz­a­tion ef­forts and to re­vamp the Com­munity Re­devel­op­ment Zone Pro­gram to provide more re­devel­op­ment across the state.

Mc­Ginty also pro­poses pen­sion re­forms to re­duce the un­fun­ded pen­sion li­ab­il­ity of mu­ni­cip­al pen­sion plans by as much as $3.5 bil­lion over 20 years, en­abling com­munit­ies to in­vest in loc­al de­vel­op­ment and in­fra­struc­ture im­prove­ment pro­jects. Com­munit­ies tak­ing steps to sta­bil­ize their pen­sion plans would re­ceive pri­or­ity in re­vital­iz­a­tion fund­ing.

In oth­er news, Mc­Ginty re­leased a tele­vi­sion com­mer­cial that calls for eth­ics re­forms in Har­ris­burg and help for hard-work­ing fam­il­ies.

A nar­rat­or says, “Tired of big money and ca­reer politi­cians? Here’s a prob­lem solv­er: Katie Mc­Ginty. One of ten kids. Dad, a Phil­adelphia po­lice of­ficer. Mom, a res­taur­ant host­ess. Be­came seni­or ad­viser to Pres­id­ent Clin­ton. And cre­ated 3,000 new jobs as en­vir­on­ment sec­ret­ary for Rendell. As gov­ernor, a total ban on gifts to Har­ris­burg politi­cians. Re­store Corbett’s edu­ca­tion cuts. Sup­port Obama­care. She’ll take on Corbett to de­liv­er for us.” ••

You can reach at twaring@bsmphilly.com.

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