Boyle takes Democratic Party endorsement from Sabatina

State Rep. Kevin Boyle has taken the Democratic Party endorsement away from incumbent John Sabatina Jr. in the 5th Senatorial District.

On Jan. 30, Sabatina was endorsed by ward leaders Mike Stack, Connie Dougherty, Mike McAleer, John Sabatina Sr. and Harry Enggasser at a meeting at Cafe Michelangelo.

Ward leaders Alan Butkovitz, Pat Parkinson, Lorri Bednarek, Bobby Henon and Shawn Dillon skipped the meeting. They favored Boyle.

Though the 10 ward leaders were evenly split, Sabatina became the endorsed candidate because the wards backing him account for 156 divisions, to 99 for Boyle,

In the meantime, Stack gave up leadership of the 58th Ward to concentrate on his duties as lieutenant governor.

His replacement, Mike Kates, initially backed Sabatina.

However, Kates called a meeting of ward leaders for last week at Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5. Such meetings are called by the leader of the ward in a district with the most divisions.

At that meeting, Kates joined the five ward leaders in backing Boyle, giving him the endorsement by a count of 143 divisions to 112.

“I felt it was the best thing to do for Northeast Philadelphia,” Kates said.

Boyle received the good news as he was attending the March 10 meeting of the Burholme Community Town Watch and Civic Association.

“I am honored to receive the official Democratic Party endorsement as I run to represent communities from Somerton and Parkwood to Port Richmond and Bridesburg in the state Senate,” he said. “We have the support of ward leaders who are strident advocates for the Democratic Party and for our district, and with their support I know we’ll have a greater capacity to get our message out to voters in the coming weeks.”

The morning after the endorsement, Boyle treated the ward leaders backing him to breakfast at Cafe Michelangelo.

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Former District Attorney Lynne Abraham endorsed Sabatina.

“I’m proud to give Sen. John Sabatina my endorsement. I have been fighting against injustice my entire career so I know what it takes. Sen. Sabatina has shown time and again that he has the courage and commitment to stand up for all Pennsylvanians. He has a proven track record, and I’m glad he’s our man in Harrisburg.”

Sabatina thanked Abraham, calling her a “mentor” when he was an assistant district attorney.

“I learned so much about public service and fighting injustice from her,” he said.

Sabatina, who served nine years in the state House, has also been endorsed by Lt. Gov. Mike Stack, Sheriff Jewell Williams, Carpenters Northeast Regional Council, AFSCME Local 88, Sheetmetal Workers Local 19, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776, Pennsylvania State Troopers Local 37, Operating Engineers Local 542, Roofers & Waterproofers Local 30, Teamsters Regional Council, the International Longshoremen Local 1291 and the International Union of Painters & Allied Trades District Council 21.

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Ross Feinberg, the Republican candidate in the 5th Senatorial District, announced a plan that would replace Mayor Jim Kenney’s proposed soda tax

“The message is clear: Mayor Kenney doesn’t care about you nor your employment. Particularly in Northeast Philly, where Pepsi is on Roosevelt Boulevard, and North Philly’s Coca-Cola Bottling on Erie.”

Feinberg, who is running on a platform to “Make the Great Northeast Great Again,” suggested selling Philadelphia Gas Works to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars.

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City Councilman Bobby Henon endorsed Jared Solomon, who is challenging state Rep. Mark Cohen (D-202nd dist.) in the primary.

“Jared Solomon has proven to be a great partner for us in City Hall. We need his kind of leadership in Harrisburg so that we can continue to improve the neighborhoods here in the Northeast. I am proud to endorse Jared Solomon for state representative of District 202 and I will be working hard to ensure his victory this April.”

Solomon has also been endorsed by City Controller Alan Butkovitz and unions representing police officers, plumbers and firefighters and paramedics.

Solomon is founder and president of the Take Back Your Neighborhood civic association. His top issues include school funding, unemployment and economic development.

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The Pennsylvania State Troopers Association endorsed U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey

“The men and women who serve in the Pennsylvania State Police and in police departments across the state risk their lives every day to make our communities safer. They deserve our respect and admiration now more than ever, as extreme, anti-law enforcement rhetoric has led to violence against police officers. The Pennsylvania State Police have our backs, and I am proud to have theirs in Washington,” Toomey said.

The Pennsylvania State Troopers Association represents about 9,000 current and retired Troopers.

“The Pennsylvania State Troopers Association would like to thank Sen. Toomey for his efforts in support of law enforcement in Pennsylvania and all across the country,” said Joseph R. Kovel, president of the PSTA. “In an age when some make it a point to denigrate law enforcement, Sen. Toomey has been a strong voice that stresses that police are here to protect us and keep us safe. Sen. Toomey has been the leading voice in support of law enforcement in Washington.”

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Former Pennsylvania Gov. and U.S. Attorney General Dick Thornburgh has endorsed Ohio Gov. John Kasich for president.

Said Thornburgh, “He has the experience, vision and common sense to be a great president. As the only governor still in the race — and being governor is a job I know well — he’s proven his ability to shake things up and get things done. He knows how to balance a budget. He knows how to create jobs. He knows how to listen. There’s been a lot of talk and a lot of distractions in this race so far, but I’m supporting a man who has shown real leadership. Moreover, I am firmly convinced that John Kasich is the party’s best candidate to defeat the Democratic nominee this November. Finally, John Kasich is a man of integrity, faith, tolerance, compassion and commitment to his community.”

Kasich, like Thornburgh, was born and raised in Western Pennsylvania.

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Braddock Mayor John Fetterman, a Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, last week called on Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz to resign as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.

Wasserman Schultz co-sponsored a bill that Fetterman believes guts loan shark regulation and weakens consumer protections.

In a letter to supporters, Fetterman said Wasserman Schultz’s action is “deplorable,” adding that she has turned her back on vulnerable members of society.

The candidate asked supporters to tell Wasserman Schultz: “You have abandoned the values of the Democratic Party and betrayed the most vulnerable members of society who depend on our party to fight for them. I urge you to resign from your position as DNC Chair immediately.” ••