As Election Day nears, the Northeast Times takes a final look at the candidates.
Philadelphians will go to the polls next Tuesday to nominate candidates for district attorney, city controller and city and state judges.
The big race is the Democratic primary for district attorney.
The candidates are Teresa Carr Deni, Larry Krasner, Joe Khan, Michael Untermeyer, Jack O’Neill, Tariq El-Shabazz and Rich Negrin.
Krasner has benefited from $1.45 million from a political action committee funded by liberal political activist George Soros.
Untermeyer has loaned his campaign $950,000.
The winner of the primary will face Republican Beth Grossman.
Jack O’Neill last week picked up some key endorsements from Northeast Democrats in his bid for district attorney.
O’Neill received backing from U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle, City Controller Alan Butkovitz, Councilman Bobby Henon, elections commissioner Lisa Deeley, state Reps. Kevin Boyle, Mike Driscoll and Ed Neilson and ward leaders Marge Tartaglione, Brian Eddis, Marty Bednarek and Shawn Dillon.
“I carefully studied the positions and records of each of the candidates running for district attorney,” Brendan Boyle said. “As a Philadelphian, I am glad that overall we have a good field of high-quality candidates running. That said, I do think in terms of experience and vision there is one candidate who stands out: Jack O’Neill.”
O’Neill, the last candidate to enter the race, also has the endorsement of eight building trades unions.
“The level of support we have received in the Northeast, and all corners of this city, has been truly humbling,” O’Neill said. “I’ve dedicated my career to standing up for victims and know what it takes to restore integrity to the district attorney’s office. I entered this race because I felt there was no other candidate with the experience Philadelphia needs to lead this critically important office to make a positive impact on the big issues it is facing. I’m honored to take on that role.”
Tariq El-Shabazz received some important backing on Saturday in his run for district attorney.
At a news conference at his campaign office at 52nd and Arch streets, he was endorsed by Councilwomen Jannie Blackwell, Cindy Bass and Blondell Reynolds Brown, Councilman Curtis Jones Transport Workers Union Local 234 and leaders of the laborers’ union.
City Controller Alan Butkovitz faces a Democratic primary challenge from Rebecca Rhynhart.
The winner will face Republican Mike Tomlinson.
Philadelphia voters will decide on the following two questions:
Shall The Philadelphia Home Rule Charter be amended to allow for the award of certain contracts based on best value to the City?
Shall The Philadelphia Home Rule Charter be amended to provide for the creation of a Philadelphia Community Reinvestment Commission to be charged with recommending coordinated community reinvestment strategies for the City of Philadelphia by identifying opportunities for public, private, and philanthropic entities to collaborate and leverage their resources for the public good?
The Committee of Seventy supports the ballot question that, if approved, would allow certain city contracts to be awarded through a “best value” process instead of to the “lowest responsible bidder.” Mayor Jim Kenney believes best value would help businesses known for quality and past performance and those owned by minorities.
Seventy has not taken a position on the other question, which was introduced by City Council President Darrell Clarke. Then-Mayor John Street created a similar panel by executive order in 2000.
Philadelphia Democrats will nominate nine candidates for Common Pleas Court. There are 27 candidates.
They are, in order of ballot position, Stella Tsai, Vikki Kristiansson, Deborah Cianfrani, John Macoretta, Rania Major, Henry McGregor Sias, Lawrence Bozzelli, Vincent Furlong, Brian McLaughlin, Shanese Johnson, Mark Cohen, Daniel Sulman, Leon Goodman, Deborah Canty, Wendi Barish, Leonard Deutchman, Zac Shaffer, Jennifer Schultz, Vincent Melchiorre, Jon Marshall, David Conroy, Mark Moore, Danyl Patterson, Terri Booker, Lucretia Clemons, Crystal Powell and Bill Rice.
Furlong, an appointed judge from Somerton, is the only candidate also running as a Republican.
Philadelphia Democrats will nominate two candidates for Municipal Court. The six candidates are Matt Wolf, Marissa Brumbach, George Twardy, Jon Marshall, Sherman Toppin and Bill Rice.
There are no Republicans on the ballot.
Statewide, the race for Supreme Court is set, Democrat Dwayne Woodruff and Republican Sallie Mundy are unopposed in the primary. Woodruff, a former Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback, is an Allegheny County Common Pleas Court judge. Mundy was appointed to the Supreme Court last June.
Both parties have five candidates running for four nominations to Superior Court.
The Democrats are Carolyn Nichols, Geoff Moulton, Maria McLaughlin, Debbie Kunselman and Bill Caye. Caye is the only unendorsed candidate.
The Republicans are Emil Giordano, Craig Stedman, Wade Kagarise, Mary Murray and Paula Patrick. The GOP is worried that Murray the only unendorsed candidate will win one of the nominations. The party mailed a piece of literature criticizing her rulings as a magisterial district judge.
There are two openings on Commonwealth Court.
The six Democratic candidates are Timothy Barry, Joe Cosgrove, Ellen Ceisler, Todd Eagen, Irene Clark and Bryan Barbin. Eagen is the only endorsed candidate.
The Republican candidates are Paul Lalley and Christine Fizzano Cannon. ••