Photo by Andrew Harnik/AP
Another day, another insult from president-elect Donald Trump.
As you have no doubt heard, on the eve of MLK weekend Trump took to attacking the legacy of civil-rights icon and Georgia congressman John Lewis:
At this point, I’m not surprised by ad hominem Twitter rants fired off by our next president. I’m more stunned by the continual fake shock espoused by my liberal friends on social media. Every damn day, I see white progressives post “Trump has gone too far this time” or “I’m scared for this country” or “We are now entering a dangerous America.”
I sit there laughing — often hysterically — but this weekend I couldn’t take it anymore. Read more »
Left to right: Kecia Hillard, Democrat; Roger Chu, Democrat; Michelle Mattus, Republican | Photographs by Claudia Gavin
The most rancorous presidential election in modern history has left voters in the Democratic stronghold of Southeastern Pennsylvania stunned and the country bitterly divided. But just how divided? We wanted to know what would happen if we got people with different opinions together in the same room just to talk — and listen — to each other. Could there possibly be any common ground? We sought out a few more-or-less-average voters representing a wide swath of our readership, demographically and politically, and asked them to speak frankly about what was important to them as they went to the polls and how they felt in the aftermath. In early December, Kecia Hilliard, 51, manager of an LGBT-friendly senior apartment building in Mount Airy, Michelle Mattus, 41, a Ridley Park insurance broker, and Roger Chu, 27, a Collingswood researcher, agreed to sit down with Philadelphia magazine editor Tom McGrath to test the waters. Their conversation has been edited for space and clarity. — Edited by Brian Howard Read more »
John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty is leader of Philadelphia’s building trades. | Photo by Jeff Fusco
It’s hard to overstate how profoundly the Democratic Party screwed up in the 2016 election. Republicans will soon control the White House and both branches of Congress. Things are just as bleak when you look at state legislatures and governorships: Across the country, Democrats hold fewer elected offices today than at any other point since the 1920s—a jaw-dropping 100-year low.
If an average American performed this badly at their job, they’d probably be fired on the spot. If they were very, very lucky, they’d be given the opportunity to make a heartfelt apology and work on probation until they improved. But Democratic elites aren’t like you and me. They can apparently lose an election to a reality TV star, fail to take responsibility for the fact that their party may be in its death throes, and then continue to rule the party with an iron fist. Look at Nancy Pelosi—who recently said, “We cannot be taking the full responsibility for what happened in the election”—and then got reelected as House Minority Leader. Or consider the fact that Clinton loyalists are being put in charge of the DNC’s “Trump war room.”
The latest example of Democratic leaders acting with impunity takes place in our own backyard. As talk show host Dom Giordano first reported, Philly electricians union boss John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty wrote a letter to his local’s members about the election of soon-to-be President Donald Trump. IBEW Local 98 endorsed Hillary Clinton in the general election.
Doc was apparently so proud of the letter that his spokesman, Frank Keel, told Giordano he “had” to read it. He was right, but probably not for the reasons he thinks. Read more »
A political blog run by the Washington Post has called U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey one of the country’s “most underrated politicians.” Read more »
For weeks, Pennsylvania’s electors were reportedly plagued by emails, phone calls and letters from people begging them not to do exactly what they did today – vote for Donald Trump. Read more »
Photo by iStock.com/jdwfoto
Former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein and her campaign will take the plea for a presidential vote recount in Pennsylvania to federal court. Read more »
L: Joe DeFelice (photo via DeFelice’s Facebook), left, and Donald Trump (photo via Wikimedia Commons)
It’s been a fantastic year for Joe DeFelice, leader of the Philadelphia GOP. He helped Republican state Rep. Martina White fend off a Barack Obama-endorsed opponent in her Northeast district, where Democrats outnumber Republicans two-to-one. He made sure John Taylor, a Philly Republican who has served in the state House of Representatives for 31 years, held onto his seat. And, most significant, he helped turn out the vote for president-elect Donald Trump: Trump outperformed Mitt Romney in the city by almost 2 points. (And when you drill into Philadelphia’s predominantly black voting precincts, his surge was more impressive. “Among the city’s wards that are more than 75 percent African American,” the Washington Post reported, “Trump got about 1,300 — or 31 percent — more votes than Romney.”)
We talked to DeFelice about the media’s failure to predict a Trump victory, the president-elect’s conflicts of interest, Trump strategist Steve Bannon and more. At times, it got pretty heated, but along with his Trump cheerleading, DeFelice staked out a couple positions that surprised us — like saying the Republican Party should “review” its policies “against” working-class Americans. This interview was largely conducted on November 15th, though we asked a few follow-up questions last week. The transcript has been condensed and lightly edited for clarity.
Parts of Northeast Philly went pretty big for Trump. So did parts of South Philly. As someone from Northeast, why do you think a lot of that area voted for Trump?
Because they felt disaffected from the political class. And, plus, Hillary Clinton couldn’t connect. Donald Trump was talking to people out of work. And to be honest with you, people saw this as an opportunity. There’s a lot of Democrats that came over. Granted, were the numbers bigger in Northeast Philly and South Philly and the River Wards? Yes. But if you look at the citywide map, Donald Trump is better in like 50 wards in the city. Fifty. You have Republicans that went for Clinton and then came back and voted for Toomey, and voted for the rest of the Republicans down ticket. But in the blue-collar areas, working-class people voted for Donald Trump because they’re not working and they feel their life is not better off now than it was four years ago. Read more »
Election officials in Philadelphia will recount presidential votes in 75 of the county’s 1,686 precincts — or in less than five percent of precincts. Read more »
Photo by iStock.com/jdwfoto
A Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge on Wednesday dismissed Green Party candidate Jill Stein‘s plea for a presidential vote recount in the county. Read more »
Update, 1:40 p.m.: According to Jill Stein’s campaign, by Monday afternoon recount requests were filed in more than 100 districts.
“After a presidential election tarnished by the use of outdated and unreliable machines and accusations of irregularities and hacks, people of all political persuasions are asking if our election results are reliable,” Stein said in a statement. “We must recount the votes so we can build trust in our election system.”
Stein also said Monday she’d filed a legal petition with more than 100 voters seeing a recount in the state.
Earlier: Former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein says she expects vote challenges to be filed today in Pennsylvania, the last day to request a recount of the state’s 2016 presidential election results.
Stein, who rallied with Cornel West under I-95 in South Philadelphia during the DNC, has raised $6.2 million for recounts in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. The effort began after computer experts said they had found evidence that vote counts in those three states may have been manipulated or hacked.
But the process is complicated — at least in Pennsylvania. Stein can’t file for a recount for herself; instead, three voters from each voting district must request one. Per Billy Penn, Stein would need about 30,000 volunteers for this effort — and in some counties, the recount filing deadline has passed already. Stein could also file a lawsuit, but would need evidence that election fraud was “probable.” A lawsuit, then, seems like the likeliest avenue to force an audit of election results. But it seems unlikely to succeed barring evidence of fraud emerging. Read more »