Sunday, September 21, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Harrisburg Gadfly To Deliver 300 Vacuums To Fumo Judge

We told you last month how Harrisburg gadfly Gene Stilp was collecting vacuum cleaners to protest U.S. District Justice Ronald Buckwalter's controversial sentence for former state Sen. Vince Fumo, who is scheduled to report at the end of the month to serve 55 months in federal prison for his conviction on corruption charges. Now Stilp says he has collected 300 vacuum cleaners, which he plans to drive from Harrisburg to Philadelphia tomorrow to deliver at the Buckwalter's office in the federal courthouse. His message to Buckwalter: "Your Fumo sentence sucks."

Harrisburg Gadfly To Deliver 300 Vacuums To Fumo Judge

Gene Stilp (right) and pals protest former State Sen. Vincent J. Fumo´s 55-month jail term by collecting vacuum cleaners in Harrisburg last month.
Gene Stilp (right) and pals protest former State Sen. Vincent J. Fumo's 55-month jail term by collecting vacuum cleaners in Harrisburg last month. CAROLYN KASTER / Associated Press

We told you last month how Harrisburg gadfly Gene Stilp was collecting vacuum cleaners to protest U.S. District Justice Ronald Buckwalter's controversial sentence for former state Sen. Vince Fumo, who is scheduled to report at the end of the month to serve 55 months in federal prison for his conviction on corruption charges.  Now Stilp says he has collected 300 vacuum cleaners, which he plans to drive from Harrisburg to Philadelphia tomorrow.  Stilp and other protesters will deliver the vacuum cleaners to Buckwalter's office in the federal courthouse at 601 Market Street on Thursday morning.  Their message to Buckwalter: "Your Fumo sentence sucks."

The vacuum cleaner stunt is a wry reference to one of the many issues in Fumo's 137-count indictment.  Fumo used more than $6,500 from a nonprofit he founded to buy 19 vacuum cleaners - one for every floor of every house he owns.

Fumo this week asked Buckwalter to either let him stay out of prison while he appeals his sentence or put off the deadline for him to start serving time.  Stilp has a message for Fumo too:  "Time to go to jail."  That, Stilp says, will be printed on a sign on the side of the truck driving in from Harrisburg.  And Stilp takes one more little shot at Fumo, saying he plans to bring along a hand-held vacuum cleaner for the former senator's prison cell.

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
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Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
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