October 18, 2010
By Oliver Hall Pennsylvanians may notice something unusual when they go to the polls in November: Their choices for governor, lieutenant governor, and U.S. Senate will be limited exclusively to Republican and Democratic candidates. Only four other states' 2010 general-election ballots are so restrictive. What makes Pennsylvania unique, however - and suggests that something has gone seriously wrong here in the birthplace of America - is that the shortage of choices has been effectively imposed by the courts.
August 24, 2006 |
The Green Party's effort to get on Pennsylvania's Nov. 7 election ballot was dealt another setback yesterday by a federal appeals court. While urging the state legislature to enact a "less ponderous means of ballot access for minor political parties," the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia upheld a state election code provision requiring Green Party and other minor-party candidates to obtain 67,070 valid voter signatures to...
July 1, 1993 |
Chester County lawyer Robert B. Surrick will have an easier time getting on November's ballot as a candidate for the state Supreme Court after a federal court ruling yesterday. How much easier won't be clear until at least Tuesday, after a hearing to determine how many signatures Surrick - the candidate of the H. Ross Perot- inspired Patriot Party - will need to get on the ballot. U.S. District Judge Edward N. Cahn ruled that a portion of Pennsylvania's ballot access law is unconstitutional.
November 29, 1988 |
The official vote tally certified by the City Commissioners yesterday showed that Democrat Michael S. Dukakis carried Philadelphia by 230,513 votes Nov. 8, a margin close to that run up by fellow Democrat Walter Mondale in 1984. That year, Mondale polled about 234,000 more votes than President Reagan. The difference between the two elections, however, was that turnout this year was more than three percentage points lower than in 1984, according to the vote count certified yesterday.
March 26, 1986 |
Three statewide candidates for the Consumer Party will appear on the May 20 primary ballot because of an order yesterday by a federal judge, who told the state Elections Bureau to accept their nominating petitions. The order by U.S. District Judge Norma Shapiro was a victory for the minor party and its founder, Max Weiner, who has been fighting provisions of a new state law that make it virtually impossible for the party's candidates to appear on the ballot. Under Shapiro's order, the party will be permitted to field its three candidates under the Consumer Party column: Bill W. Thorn Sr. for governor; Lance S. Haver for lieutenant governor, and Thelma R. Hambright for the U.S. Senate.
January 28, 2009 |
If you want to run for public office in Pennsylvania, and you're neither a Republican nor a Democrat, you'd better be prepared to bet the farm. Carl Romanelli learned that lesson the hard way after campaigning for U.S. Senate on the Green Party ticket in 2006. After a successful challenge to his nomination petitions by Democrats, represented by Thorp, Reed & Armstrong, the Commonwealth Court in Harrisburg charged Romanelli with more than $80,000 in litigation costs. Romanelli, a retired family court officer, says that would "destroy" him financially.
October 24, 2001 |
At first, Lisa Williams thought her husband was joking. Saying he's quite serious, consumer activist Michael Morrill of West Reading announced yesterday that he would run for governor in 2002 under the Green Party banner. He pledged himself to a platform of reform, including an $11-an-hour minimum wage for Pennsylvania workers, universal health care, complete state funding of education, and an immediate end to "corporate welfare. " "Both of the old parties consider themselves pragmatists, which is another way of saying they are too dependent on polling, focus groups, and the opinions of wealthy benefactors," Morrill, 46, said.
June 18, 1997 |
Without public hearings in the waning hours of its session, the state Legislature passed and sent to Gov. Ridge a measure making it tougher for third-party and independent candidates to challenge the supremacy of the two dominant parties. By overwhelming bipartisan margins, lawmakers enacted a bill to greatly increase - in some cases nearly quadruple - the number of citizen signatures that minor-party candidates need to get on election ballots. Republican leaders say the intent is to end "frivolous" candidacies and make the election law fairer.
October 15, 1996 |
Three weeks before Election Day, Republican U.S. Rep. Jon Fox and Democratic challenger Joe Hoeffel began the final round of their nearly yearlong election bout by knocking heads last night over Fox's record in the U.S. House and the influence of organized labor in the campaign. The forum was the auditorium of Abington Senior High School, where candidates for Congress in the 13th District met in a debate sponsored by the League of Women Voters. Fox, who won election two years ago by defeating Democratic incumbent Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky, portrayed himself as a politically independent Republican who owed allegiance only to the electorate.
August 25, 1995
State Rep. David P. Richardson stood by his principles and fought for his beliefs. Here was a true brother, who when the going got tough, maintained his advocacy role for the African-American community and, undaunted by the opposition, spoke out for justice. Brother Dave was leader and spokesman for the legitimate aspirations of African-American people. He also responded to individual problems, which you knew either Brother Dave or someone in his local or Harrisburg legislative office would handle.