DA promises safe and secure election

Charges were announced against four poll workers for violating state laws that regulate elections.

At a Monday afternoon news conference where charges were announced against four 43rd Ward poll workers, District Attorney Kelley Hodge promised next week’s election will be safe and secure.

Hodge wants any voters who see improprieties to call 215–686–9641 (43, 44).

The district attorney called the charges against the individuals “reprehensible,” adding that it was “appalling” that the entire 43rd Ward, 7th Division board was allegedly involved.

Election judge Dolores Shaw, minority-party inspector Calvin Mattox, machine inspector Thurman George and bilingual translator Wallace Hill were brash and ruthless, according to Hodge.

State Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the charges at his office near 12th and Market streets.

The workers were charged with violating state laws that regulate elections, including frauds by election officers, interference with primaries and elections, prohibiting duress and intimidation of voters and interference with the free exercise of elective franchise, tampering with public records, conspiracy and other offenses.

On March 21, there was a special election in the 197th Legislative District. The vacancy was caused when Democratic Rep. Leslie Acosta resigned following her guilty pleas to a federal felony count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Republican Lucinda Little was the only name on the machine for the special election after the Democratic candidate was thrown off the ballot for not living in the district.

Democrats recruited a write-in candidate, Emilio Vazquez, who won the race in the overwhelmingly Democratic district.

Val DiGiorgio, chairman of the Republican Party of Pennsylvania, said, “As I have stated numerous times, election fraud and voting irregularities are not myths in Pennsylvania — I have personally witnessed both while working in Philadelphia as a Republican committeeman and on several campaigns. For far too long, Philadelphia Democrats have egregiously violated election laws without consequence. I applaud Attorney General Josh Shapiro for addressing the widespread fraud, intimidation and corruption by Philadelphia Democrats — today’s indictments are a win for election integrity.” ••