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Election Judges

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NEWS
October 30, 1986 | By Henry Goldman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Three men, two of them election judges, were arrested by the district attorney's office yesterday on charges that they assaulted voters at two Northeast Philadelphia polling places during the May primary elections. Bernard Fisgaer, 61, an election judge in the 27th Division of the 56th Ward, was charged with indecent assault and violations of the elections code. He was accused of sexually harassing and grabbing the breast of a candidate running against his wife for Democratic committeewoman.
NEWS
May 7, 1994 | by Ron Goldwyn, Daily News Staff Writer Staff writer Dave Davies contributed to this report
Election judges can get a little help from their friends on Tuesday - but not much, and probably not next time. That's the gist of a court ruling and a legal opinion yesterday on how local polling officials conduct Tuesday's primary election. A suit by five judges of elections sought to free them from rigid interpretation of the law. They were worried about the legality of getting help to set up and open voting machines, pick up and return election materials. Each of the city's 1,681 election divisions have five officials drawn from the major parties.
NEWS
May 6, 1994 | By Henry Goldman, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The attorney for a group of local polling officers yesterday withdrew his attempt to nullify a federal court order designed to prevent absentee-ballot fraud in Philadelphia. Benjamin Lerner, who represents six local election judges, told Common Pleas Court Judge Russell M. Nigro that he has dropped his opposition to the federal decree because there was no time left to affect the absentee-ballot process before the May 10 primary. The deadline for filing absentee ballots for Tuesday's primaries is 5 p.m. today.
NEWS
May 4, 1994 | By Henry Goldman and Marc Duvoisin, INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS Inquirer staff writer Sergio Bustos assisted in the preparation of this article
Lawyers for a group of local election board workers attempted a legal end run yesterday around a federal court order requiring the city to conduct elections in strict accordance with the law. Five judges of elections - people paid $60 to run polling places - testified in state court that if they have to comply with the state Election Code, they won't be able to set up the polling place, handle the machines and supervise counting the vote in...
NEWS
January 16, 1995 | By Mark Fazlollah, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER The Inquirer news research library contributed to this article
Joseph Ricca always votes in Philadelphia even though he has lived in New Jersey the last 17 years - minus the eight months he spent in Allenwood for vote fraud. Robert F. Koncir always votes in the city, too, although he moved to Blue Bell in 1993 when, according to his father-in-law, he "got disgusted" with Philadelphia. And John M. Palumbo Jr. has voted in Philadelphia for 21 years, but he has lived in Broomall for the last seven. Ricca, Koncir and Palumbo are not noteworthy merely for voting where they don't live.
NEWS
November 13, 1987 | By JOSEPH GRACE, Daily News Staff Writer
If you were among the disenchanted voters who felt disenfranchised on Election Day by the two major party choices running for mayor - Democratic incumbent W. Wilson Goode and Republican Frank L. Rizzo - you may have elected to cast a write-in vote. If you did, there's a good chance your vote was never officially recorded on the tally sheets by election judges. So where did your vote wind up? More than likely, it's still on the paper roll inside the voting machine that you voted on, according to several election experts.
NEWS
May 10, 1994 | By Marc Duvoisin and Mark Fazlollah, INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Philadelphia election officials yesterday sought to downplay worries that a federal judge's order for strict compliance with the state Election Code, and a criminal investigation into electoral abuses, would frighten some poll officials into staying home today. Frederick L. Voigt, executive director of the Committee of Seventy, a nonprofit group that monitors elections, said that preparations appeared to be going ahead as usual and that he expected no serious problems. "I suggest that we treat this calmly, treat it routinely, go vote," Voigt said at a news conference.
NEWS
November 20, 2010
Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska has given Sarah Palin a lesson in "going rogue. " Murkowski, 53, completed a stunning turnaround by winning reelection as a write-in candidate. It was the first time in more than 50 years anyone was elected to the Senate as a write-in. Her victory over Republican tea-party candidate Joe Miller is a popular rebuke to Palin, who supported Miller. He defeated Murkowski in the GOP primary, but Murkowski stormed back in the general election. Murkowski persuaded more than 100,000 voters to write in her name.
NEWS
November 30, 1989 | By John Ellis, Special to The Inquirer
Nobody but sheriff's deputies will be allowed to deliver election supplies to polling places in Montgomery County following an incident in which absentee ballots were left in the trunk of a candidate's car earlier this month. Newly-appointed Montgomery County Commissioner Floriana M. Bloss said at a special commissioners' meeting Nov. 22 that candidates will no longer be able to pick up the election boxes and deliver them to polling places. The boxes contain all paperwork for the election judges.
NEWS
December 8, 1991 | By Cynthia J. McGroarty, Special to The Inquirer
A group of Lansdowne Republicans who filed a petition for a new Borough Council election now say they will withdraw their request. Andrew J. Reilly, attorney for the 10 Republicans, said he would withdraw the petition because the Republicans would not be able to prove that the Nov. 5 election put them at a disadvantage. "With the evidence now, we couldn't meet the burden (of proof)," Reilly said. "The election was marred with errors. The law requires us to set forth facts that would change the results.
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NEWS
February 15, 2013
By Chris Bonneau Once again, the Pennsylvania legislature is considering a change in how state Supreme Court justices are selected. Under the current system, justices attain their seats in a competitive partisan election, and they keep their positions through noncompetitive retention elections. Some lawmakers are proposing that a commission nominate candidates, with the governor selecting a justice from among those nominees. Justices would still keep their seats in noncompetitive retention elections.
NEWS
November 8, 2012 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer
SAMIYRAH TUCKER was in tears Tuesday morning when poll workers in West Philadelphia told her she had to cast a provisional ballot because her name was not on the registration books. "I've been voting all my life, and they can't find all of our names," Tucker said inside of Henry C. Lea elementary school, at 47th and Locust streets. "Obama is going to lose votes because of this. I don't trust the [provisional] ballot. " Tucker was one of many voters whose names were not on the books and had to vote with provisional ballots, which are counted several days after the election.
NEWS
November 7, 2012 | By Mark Fazlollah,Joseph A. Slobodzianand Andrew Seidman, INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
A Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge has refused to order the Board of Elections to deliver extra provisional ballots to all polling places in the city, saying reports of ballot shortages appeared to be exaggerated. Pamela Pryor Dembe, president judge of the Court of Common Pleas in Philadelphia, rejected a petition from Organizing for America, a ground-level arm of the Democratic National Committee. National Democrats have been leaning heavily on the City Commissioners, who oversee the Board of Elections, to send more provisional ballots based on reports that many people were not appearing in the poll books, and that polling places were running out of provisional ballots that would be their only alternative for voting.
NEWS
September 17, 2011
While the spectacle of a Pittsburgh-area state senator being tried for improperly aiding her sister's state Supreme Court election campaign is bad, at least the case could give a welcome push to renewed efforts to enact reforms that would help shield all Pennsylvania appellate judges from politics. State Sen. Jane Orie (R., Allegheny) may or may not be convicted of ordering her Senate staff to perform political tasks to help Justice Joan Orie Melvin's campaign. But as long as appellate judges are chosen in contested elections, Pennsylvanians will continue to suspect - even if wrongly - that politics taints justice in the state.
NEWS
November 20, 2010
Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska has given Sarah Palin a lesson in "going rogue. " Murkowski, 53, completed a stunning turnaround by winning reelection as a write-in candidate. It was the first time in more than 50 years anyone was elected to the Senate as a write-in. Her victory over Republican tea-party candidate Joe Miller is a popular rebuke to Palin, who supported Miller. He defeated Murkowski in the GOP primary, but Murkowski stormed back in the general election. Murkowski persuaded more than 100,000 voters to write in her name.
NEWS
April 22, 2010 | By Amy Worden INQUIRER HARRISBURG BUREAU
Gov. Rendell on Wednesday renewed his call to change the way state judges are chosen in Pennsylvania, citing the "explosion" of campaign spending and growing number of judicial scandals. Rendell said the election of judges had led to the influence of big money in judicial races, which has "totally eroded public confidence in the judicial system. " The governor and others have advocated the merit selection of judges for the Commonwealth, Superior and Supreme Courts. Under such a plan, a 14-member nonpartisan panel would pick the 31 judges for those courts.
NEWS
January 26, 2010
City Democratic Party boss and U.S. Rep. Bob Brady (D., Pa.) should reconsider seeking another interim judicial appointment for Joyce Eubanks. Eubanks, a veteran public defense lawyer and political insider, served as an interim city Common Pleas Court judge, but failed to win election last fall. She capped her 15-month appointment to the court with an unusual ruling in a theft case that is being challenged by District Attorney Seth Williams. The district attorney contends that Eubanks didn't just make a bad call, but that she actually overstepped her legal authority.
NEWS
June 18, 2009 | By Robert Heim
Imagine a defendant ordered to pay $50 million in damages. He appeals to the state's highest court. He throws $3 million into a campaign to seat a favored judge on that court. The damage award is wiped out. Last week, in a West Virginia case known as Caperton v. Massey, the U.S. Supreme Court looked at those very facts and called it an extreme case - so extreme that the judge's failure to disqualify himself offends the Constitution. So what does this mean for those of us who don't have $50 million at stake?
NEWS
June 11, 2009
The river of money that sloshes through campaigns to elect judges in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia has long raised questions about the quality of justice and one's ability to remain impartial - especially when a big donor is party to a case. Judges and other groups in favor of electing judicial candidates have argued that money has no impact on cases. But the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled for the first time that big campaign contributions can influence the outcome of a trial.
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