Thomas concedes nomination in Democratic primary for City Council

Isaiah Thomas last week called Helen Gym to concede the fifth and final nomination in the Democratic primary for City Council at-large.

Gym unofficially finished with 49,269 votes to 47,999 for Thomas.

In a statement, Thomas said, “I want to say, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. Philadelphia has given me the opportunity to truly achieve something great. Although I may not be a councilman, I have come extremely close without having to make any deals or accept any money that is questionable. I have run a campaign that I am truly proud of. I am excited to work with all of the incoming councilpersons on the issues that matter to Philadelphians. I can assure you that Philadelphians will continue to have me as a tireless advocate for important issues such as education and public safety. I cannot let those Philadelphians down who saw me as their representative voice. I want to thank every supporter for showing me the power of grassroots and community organizing. I am looking forward to spending time with my family and figuring out what is next for me.”

The top four Democratic finishers in the 16-person race were Derek Green, Blondell Reynolds Brown, Allan Domb and Bill Greenlee. Incumbent Wilson Goode Jr. finished seventh. Sherrie Cohen, who had the party endorsement, placed eighth. Incumbent Ed Neilson finished ninth.

The top five Republican finishers, in order, were David Oh, Denny O’Brien, Terry Tracy, Dan Tinney and Al Taubenberger. The top seven finishers in the fall are elected.

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Montgomery County Commissioner Josh Shapiro has decided against seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate, and one conservative political action committee believes that’s a sign that Republican Sen. Pat Toomey is in good shape for re-election.

The America Rising PAC pointed to a comment by an editor from Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball that claimed national Democrats “loathe” former congressman Joe Sestak, the leading Democratic candidate.

“It’s panic time for Pennsylvania Democrats. Their preferred candidate, Josh Shapiro, has taken a pass, and now they have to put up with a candidate they ‘loathe.’ Sestak’s anemic fundraising and embarrassing walking tour have gone so poorly that Democrats are losing hope in the Keystone State,” said Jeff Bechdel, America Rising PAC communications director.

Shapiro had been recruited to run by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and Sens. Chuck Schumer and Jon Tester, who is chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Afterward, Sabato moved the race from a tossup to one that leans Republican.

Toomey beat Sestak in a close race in 2010.

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Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum last week announced his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination.

Santorum made the announcement at Penn United Technologies, in southwestern Pennsylvania.

A former member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Santorum served in the Senate from 1995 to 2006. He ran for president in 2012, winning 11 states and finishing as the runner-up for the GOP nomination to Mitt Romney.

At the speech, Santorum was surrounded by his wife Karen and their children.

Supporters from 32 states were in attendance to hear Santorum say his priority is the “American worker.”

Santorum vowed to defeat ISIS, implement a flat tax, reduce spending, ease business regulations and boost the manufacturing and energy sectors.

In his campaign, Santorum will advocate for the poor, disabled and the unborn.

“Every life matters,” he said.

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The 2015 Northeast Republican Leadership Conference will take place June 18–20 at the Sheraton Hotel, 201 N. 17th St.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will serve as the keynote speaker during the conference’s luncheon reception on Saturday, June 20.

“As the cradle of liberty, Philadelphia is the perfect location to discuss the future of America with citizens from across the country,” Walker said. “I’m excited to speak with my fellow Americans about the ways we can put our great nation on the right path.”

In addition to Walker, the following speakers are confirmed for the conference: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie; U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham; former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum; former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton; former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina; Karl Rove, former senior adviser to President George W. Bush; and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus. ••