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Inquirer Daily News

Archive: May, 2010

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 4:12 PM

Happy primary election day.  There are six men -- two Republicans, six Democrats -- trying to replace Gov. Rendell.  Polls leading up to today's election show a significant number of undecided voters.  Here's a recap of the Daily News profiles on the six candidates.

Check out tomorrow's Daily News for results on this and other races.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 4:09 PM

Bill Bender, our man in Delaware County, files this curious report: You know it’s a hot race when the Middle Eastern media shows up in Delaware County.

This morning, a film crew from Qatar-based Al Jazeera English stopped in at Aldan Magnet School, outside of Southwest Philadelphia in Congressman Joe Sestak’s district, to cover the U.S. Senate race. A Republican official said the reporter was perturbed by the absence of lawn signs for U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, who is fighting for his political life in the Democratic primary against Sestak.

"He said, ‘You don’t have any Specter signs around,’ and I said, ‘Well, you’re going to have to talk to the Democrats about that,’" said Aldan GOP leader John McBlain. "He was really kind of almost combative about why those signs weren’t up. I thought maybe he was from the Specter campaign. It was strange."

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 3:54 PM

Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. tonight. If you run into any problems trying to cast your vote, here is some information on what you can do:

* Any election questions can go to the non-partisan watchdog group Committee of Seventy at 1-866-OUR-VOTE.
* To report a malfunctioning voting machine, call 215-686-7800.
* If you want to file a complaint, call the DA’s office at 215-686-9641, 9643, 9644 or 9884.
* To double-check that you’re registered, call 215-686-1590.
* To reach the City Commissioners, call 215-686-3462.
* And Election Court can be reached at 215-686-4278.

And, of course, if you want to report any shenanigans, send an email to PhillyClout.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 12:10 PM

We're here at the Famous Fourth Street Deli where all of Philadelphia's political elite gather on Election Day to talk shop and eat pastrami on rye. Keep refeshing this post for all the news from the diner...

2:10 pm -- We love the Famous for who shows up on election day.  But just as telling in political circles is who doesn't show up.  U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, chairman of the City Democratic Committee, and former City Controller Jon Saidel, a candidate for lieutenant governor today, are apparently out pounding the pavement and knocking on doors in search of voters.  Political consultant Neil Oxman, sitting at a table with former Mayor Bill Green, Philadelphia Magazine editor Larry Platt and MSNBC's Chris Matthews, gave Mayor Nutter a bit of guff for not being out in wards during lunch. Nutter is the leader of the city's 52nd ward.

1:50 pm -- Mayor Nutter just said that the key to a victory for Sen. Arlen Specter in this region will be driving up turnout later in the day. “I think what’s key is having more workers out knocking on doors,” he said. “With ponchos, umbrellas, all kinds of paraphernalia.”

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 12:03 PM

City Council has chosen primary election day to post a contract opportunity for a financial advisor to Council President Anna Verna and the legislative body. Think they’re trying to bury the news?

The contract is for between $100,000 and $150,000. Here are the details:

City Council seeks a consultant to advise the Council President and all other members of Council during Council’s legislative session in connection with its budgetary and financial-related legislative and oversight responsibilities.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 11:00 AM

As you may know, many Philadelphians are heading to vote today in some interesting polling places. Philly voters pull the lever in gas stations, bars, funeral homes and private residences -- just to provide a few examples.

Check out this photo project that captures how Philadelphia votes. It's called "Behind the Curtain: A Look at Philadelphia's Unique Polling Stations."

(Full disclosure: this half of PhillyClout is married to the photographer.)

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 10:00 AM

In addition to voting in the governor and senate races, Philadelphians at the polls today will be asked to weigh in on four ballot questions. Here’s a speedy run down on the questions:

The most significant question is #3, which asks voters to approve a change to the city charter abolishing the embattled Board of Revision of Taxes. The BRT would be replaced with two new agencies – one to make assessments and the other to hear appeals. City Council pushed this legislation through after a damning Inquirer series revealed a legacy of political patronage and inaccurate assessments at the BRT. (You can read those stories here.)

There are three other questions on the ballot. #1 asks voters to give City Council the authority to require contractors doing city work to provide Economic Opportunity Plans that show minority and female participation. #3 asks voters to approve reducing the size on the Zoning Board of Adjustment. And #4 asks for approval for the city to borrow $65.5 million for infrastructure spending.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 9:08 AM

Pia Varma -- who attempted a Republican challenge to U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, but was booted from the ballot -- is now trying to gather write-in support. Varma bought full page ads in today's Daily News and Inquirer, asking GOP voters to write in her name.

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
 Follow Chris on Twitter

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
 Follow Jenny on Twitter.

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