Republican candidates rack up key endorsements

Terry Tracy, a Republican candidate for City Council at large, has been endorsed by Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 and the International Association of Fire Fighters and Paramedics Local 22.

Tracy said, “It is really an honor to have the continued support of both the FOP and Local 22, particularly at this critical juncture in the fall campaign. I have the utmost respect for the tremendous sacrifices our police, firefighters, paramedics and their families make day in and day out. It is apparent that members of both organizations are looking for new leadership and more effective advocates in the city’s legislature. The only way I know how to repay them for their support is to continue to fight for our many shared interests once on Council, and I intend to do just that.”

Tracy also has the backing of the Union of Hospital and Healthcare employees, District 1199c.

Tracy said, “I want to thank Mr. (Henry) Nicholas and Mr. (Chris) Woods for their continued demonstration of support. I am especially looking forward to joining 1199c and their partner locals in their voter outreach, door knocking and GOTV efforts this fall.”

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In other news, Republican at-large Council nominee Dan Tinney has been endorsed by the Philadelphia AFL-CIO and Building and Construction Trades Council.

ldquo;I am so humbled and honored to get the trusted endorsements of the Philadelphia AFl-CIO and the Philadelphia Building Trades,” said Tinney, a member of Steamfitters Local 420. “As a third-generation union member in my family in Northeast Philadelphia, I am 100-percent pro-union, pro-labor and pro-jobs.”

Tinney was described by Philadelphia AFL-CIO President Pat Eiding as “the candidate in the Republican at-large race that would be a true advocate for labor in City Hall.”

Philadelphia Building Trades business manager Pat Gillespie said, “Tinney is an active union member, which means he understands what it takes to put in a hard day’s work as well as our members’ responsibilities to provide for their families. I believe Tinney will support policies to attract jobs that pay livable wages.”

Tinney said, “We need policies in City Hall that are going to stimulate job creation and protect working-class families across Philadelphia. This great city was built by generations of union brothers and sisters, and its future will be built by union brothers and sisters. I want to protect that legacy and be a part of it.”

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Meanwhile, the FOP has also endorsed Republican nominee Al Taubenberger for an at-large Council seat.

“Al Taubenberger is an honorable man who deeply respects the men and women of the Philadelphia Police Department. Throughout his distinguished career in government and business, he has always had our backs. We are honored to endorse Al for City Council in the general election,” said John McNesby, the FOP president.

ldquo;I have always had the utmost respect for all those in law enforcement and am honored by the endorsement of Philadelphia’s police officers,” Taubenberger said. “I thank President McNesby, his executive board, and our men and women in blue, not only for this valuable endorsement, but for their selfless and valorous service to the people of Philadelphia.”

Earlier, Taubenberger, of Fox Chase, was endorsed by Philadelphia Firefighters & Paramedics Union Local 22.

Taubenberger also has a new sandwich named in his honor at one of his favorite eateries, the Dining Car, 8826 Frankford Ave. He is a longtime friend of Dining Car owner Nancy Morozin, who created the Tauben-Burger to honor his German-American roots. It is an angus beef patty atop a German potato pancake and covered with onions, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and mustard on a kaiser roll.

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Independent at-large Council candidate Andrew Stober raised $87,306 in the recent campaign finance filing period and has $63,284 on hand entering the final five weeks of the campaign.

Stober has outraised all five Republican candidates, and has more cash on hand than any of the GOP contenders.

“Andrew Stober is the first independent to mount a serious independent campaign for City Council at large, and this report proves beyond a doubt that he is a credible candidate,” said campaign manager Dave Mellet. “Voters are tired of the status quo and are looking for qualified and progressive candidates to help move our city forward.”

Stober resigned as chief of staff for the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities to run for Council.

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Rob Gleason, chairman of the Republican Party of Pennsylvania, is criticizing Gov. Tom Wolf for vetoing a short-term budget plan that sought to provide emergency state funding to schools and social services,

“It’s shameful to watch Gov. Tom Wolf single-handedly withhold funding for our schools and social services so he can try and force tax increases,” Gleason said. “For nearly three months now, school districts and nonprofit organizations across Pennsylvania have been forced to wonder if they can pay their next set of bills, and all because Tom Wolf decided to play political games with their funding.”

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Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale last week endorsed Democratic mayoral nominee Jim Kenney.

In his statement, DePasquale noted Kenney’s commitment to reforming the city’s pension system and fighting for a fair funding formula for Philadelphia’s schools.

“Jim Kenney understands that the city’s pension and education crises cannot be solved overnight,” he said. “He is prepared to address these issues head on by regularly reviewing pension management and investment contracts, and urging state government to properly fund the school district. I look forward to working with him to bring Philadelphia’s pension system and school district back to fiscal stability.”

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Former State Treasurer and Auditor General Barbara Hafer endorsed John Fetterman in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate.

Fetterman, the mayor of Braddock in Allegheny County, faces Joe Sestak and Katie McGinty in the primary. They hope to challenge Republican Sen. Pat Toomey.

“If John can do even a fraction of what he did in Braddock for other communities in the commonwealth, Pennsylvania will thrive like never before,” Hafer said. “While so many politicians were compromising their ethics or engaging in risky borrowing to try to stabilize struggling economies, John attracted millions through simple hard work. And what’s more, he spent that money wisely, investing in everything from a community center that provides a safe space for families and kids after school to Braddock’s first commercial retail space in years.

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Harper Polling surveyed 700 likely voters on Sept. 9–10, and Sen. Pat Toomey led Joe Sestak, 47 to 37 percent, and Katie McGinty, 48 to 34 percent.

In a survey of 304 Democrats, Sestak led McGinty, 40 to 30 percent with 29 percent undecided. The poll was conducted before John Fetterman entered the Democratic primary.

In the same survey, Hillary Clinton led the Democratic primary field for president with 38 percent. She was trailed by Joe Biden, with 23 percent. Biden has not announced his candidacy.

Bernie Sanders had 19 percent, followed by Lincoln Chafee and Martin O’Malley, each with 3 percent. Jim Webb had 1 percent.

In a poll of 369 Republicans, Donald Trump led the way with 30 percent. He was followed by Ben Carson (27), Jeb Bush (7), Marco Rubio (7), Ted Cruz (6), Rick Santorum (3), Scott Walker (3), Carly Fiorina (3), John Kasich (3), Rand Paul (2), Chris Christie (1) and Mike Huckabee (1). Jim Gilmore, Lindsey Graham, Bobby Jindal, George Pataki and Rick Perry each received 0 percent.

The poll was taken before Walker and Perry dropped out of the race and Fiorina had a strong debate performance.

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State Sen. John Rafferty, of Montgomery County, a Republican candidate for attorney general, released the following statement regarding news that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has suspended Attorney General Kathleen Kane’s law license.

“In light of today’s Supreme Court decision to suspend her law license, I think it’s time that Attorney General Kathleen Kane make the right decision and step aside. The Office of Attorney General, the employees who work there and the jobs they do are far too important to have them compromised by the distractions that have resulted from the ongoing investigation into Attorney General Kane. While the Attorney General is entitled to her day in court, the people of Pennsylvania deserve to have an Attorney General that is fully focused and committed to doing the important work of keeping Pennsylvanians safe. ••