WELL, THIS is awkward.
Anthony Clark, who heads the three-person panel in charge of Philadelphia elections and voter registration, apparently isn't really into, ya know . . . voting.
The Committee of Seventy wants Clark to leave at the end of his term if he can't disprove a report in yesterday's Philadelphia City Paper that he missed the last five elections.
"It's astonishing that the head of the board that oversees Philadelphia's elections doesn't vote," Ellen Kaplan, the watchdog group's interim president and CEO, said in a statement. "Clark should be the first to set an example for city voters about the importance of voting. He can't credibly deliver this message when he doesn't vote himself."
Clark, a Democrat who is up for re-election next year, hasn't voted - in person or by absentee ballot - since the 2011 general election, City Paper reported. He did not return an email or phone call to his city office requesting comment yesterday.
"This must be a joke, but I guess that is expected," said Joseph DeFelice, executive director of the Philadelphia GOP. "It appears even he knew that he shouldn't vote for [President] Barack Obama or [U.S. Rep.] Chaka Fattah."
Clark, the commission's first black chairman, was elected in 2007 and earns $134,149 a year.
In 2003, Clark dropped out of the race 15 hours before polling places opened, was elected anyway, then claimed he hadn't realized he'd dropped out. A judge blocked him from taking the seat.
The Committee of Seventy has long argued that the elected City Commissioners should be replaced with an appointed professional.
"But elected or appointed," Kaplan said, "the people who run elections should vote."