The tomb of the unknown soldier who fought for liberty in the Revolutionary War.
In Philadelphia stands the tomb of the unknown soldier who fought for liberty in the Revolutionary War.

Philadelphia is becoming one of the most corrupt cities in the nation, owing mainly to Democrat control.

Just before the city hosted this year’s Democrat National Convention, longtime congressman Chaka Fattah and his son were convicted of corruption.

Just after the convention, a slew of Democrat officials faced a variety of state and federal investigations.

John Dougherty, the most powerful Democrat operative in the city, has been at the center of a federal investigation into possible racketeering. The head of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in Philadelphia, Dougherty has been a kingmaker for decades, including his critical support for the current mayor, Jim Kenney. His brother serves on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Anyone who wants to win an election campaign in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania kisses Dougherty’s ring.

City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson is reportedly under federal investigation over no-bid real estate deals in the city. Johnson allegedly approved the sale of city properties without a bidding process to several buyers who contributed to his campaign.

Seth Williams, Philadelphia’s district attorney, didn’t report five years’ worth of gifts he should have acknowledged under state and local codes until recently. These gifts included a $45,000 roof repairs, and airfare and lodging to places like Key West, Las Vegas and the Dominican Republic. Williams’ lawyer said: “The true answer is, he should have reported it. He failed to do so. And he accepts responsibility.”

Former Mayor Michael Nutter and his entourage reportedly improperly used funds for a trip to Rome, among other irregularities. The funds came from the Philadelphia marathon and should not have been used for such expenses. Nutter has denied any impropriety.

At the state level, Attorney General Kathleen was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice, and she resigned. She faces nearly two years in jail. With Kane out, top deputy Bruce Castor took over as acting attorney general. Castor, the former Montgomery County district attorney, declined to press charges against Bill Cosby in 2005 became the No. 1 enforcer of Pennsylvania law.

Two State Supreme Court justices were forced out of office for their involvement in sending pornographic materials via state email. Okay, one was a Republican. And, three top Penn State employees are scheduled to go on trial for covering up the pedophile ring of former football coach Gerry Sandusky.

Despite all of this mishegoss, a huge majority of Philadelphians will pull the Democrat lever in November.

I guess we Philadelphians will get what we deserve—a continuation of the corrupt practices at the local, state and national levels.

Christopher Harper, a recovering journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law.

By John Ruberry

Last week the NCAA agreed to restore the 111 victories it forced the Penn State Nittany Lions football team to vacate as part of its penalty for covering up the child sex abuse crimes of the team’s longtime defensive coordinator, Jerry Sandusky. Once again Penn State’s College Hall of Fame coach, Joe Paterno, is the NCAA’s all-time winningest head coach at 409 wins.

Paterno, who died in 2012 two months after Penn State fired him, knew of two of Sandusky’s sexual assaults: a 1998 incident that led to Sandusky’s surprising (at the time) retirement the next year and Sandusky’s 2001 rape of a ten year-old boy in the showers of the football team. By then Sandusky, who received a cushy retirement package that included full access to the Nittany Lion athletic facilities, was also given emeritus status at the school.

I watched Paterno’s last victory–although no one knew that it would be so at the time–on television against Illinois, a dull and sloppy home game in the snow that Penn State won, or I should say, didn’t lose, 10-7. That 409th win was one of many landmark victories for Paterno–he passed Grambling’s Eddie Robinson to become the all-time Division 1 leader in wins. But JoePa coached his team from the press box, protected by glass from the unseasonable cold.

A similar glass wall of protection shields Paterno to this day. The public became aware of the Sandusky scandal a few days after win 409 and Paterno, along with the school president, was fired the following week. But JoePa couldn’t be fired in person, supporters had surrounded his home and Paterno got canned by way of a telephone call. Students rioted in response to JoePa’s dismissal. The next summer Penn State was hit by brutal NCAA sanctions, including a ban on bowl games for four years, drastic scholarship cuts, a $60 million fine, and the removal of those 111 wins. Those victories dated back to 1998, when Paterno became aware of a Sandusky sexual assault.

Paterno’s able successor, Bill O’Brien, left Penn State after two seasons working under those draconian sanctions. He had decried the pressure of the “Paterno people” at the college, that glass wall. O’Brien committed the sin of not being JoePa.

In 2013 some of the pulled scholarships were restored by the NCAA and last year the team’s bowl-ban was removed.

John "Lee" Ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry

Perversely, the Penn State hockey team chose to celebrate, yes celebrate, the restoration of the Paterno wins by donning “409” stickers on their helmets for its game against Michigan State Friday night.

Paterno’s glass wall is getting stronger–and I believe there is something wrong with that. Penn State–you have a problem.

There is some good news. Penn State lost that hockey game.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

Out of a decent respect for the opinion of mankind, it is customary to give such excuses as “threatening weather” or “wet field.” there is nothing in the world, though, to prevent me from saying the field is unfit because I had a nosebleed behind first base.

Bill Veeck Veeck as in Wreck p 163

Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress:

Article 2 Section 1 US Constitution


A while back Both Smitty & I took umbrage at the Mass State legislature attempting to disenfranchise me making a change to the way electors are selected in the state but while I still am upset at the change I pointed out that constitutionally the legislature was perfectly within its rights.

Now however the left is getting nervous because the GOP has figured out they can play this same game to their advantage.

In September, top Pennsylvania Republicans shocked the nation by proposing a change to the state’s election rules that would have rigged the Electoral College in favor of Mitt Romney. Facing a nationwide backlash, the state’s GOP backed down—but not before Wisconsin Republicans considered a similar plan. With the old rules still in place, President Barack Obama won a 332-206 electoral college victory over Romney.

But now that Romney has been defeated, prominent GOPers are once again mulling rule changes that could make it harder for Democrats to win the White House—and easier for Republicans to claim Electoral College votes in states where they lose the popular vote.

Maybe it’s just me but I don’t recall Mother Jones objecting when Massachusetts made the move to eventually discard my electoral influence.

At Outside the beltway James Joyner comments:

Awarding the entirely of a state’s votes to even a narrow winner makes no sense whatsoever. And, in the cases of states where one party has a decisive advantage, they might as well not bother to hold elections, since the outcome is inevitable. Given the incredible difficulty of amending the Constitution and the fact that the popular vote winner ultimately prevails almost all the time, we’re not going to abolish the Electoral College. Reforming it so that it more accurately reflects election outcomes, though, is within the power of individual state legislatures. So long as it’s done well enough in advance, I don’t find that problematic. Even when, as is unarguably the case here, it’s motivated by partisan advantage rather than philosophical purity.

My thoughts are a tad different.

One of the things that tends to drive me nuts about the GOP is their unwillingness to take off the gloves, too afraid of what the media and the democrats will say ignoring the fact that the left, the media and the Democrats (who are pretty much the same thing) are going to object no matter what the GOP does.

That being the case the best choice is to ignore them and do what you want to do, or better yet what your supporters elected you to do.

The problem is simple, it is virtually impossible to police the cities where the Democrats own the black vote in the same way that the bosses of old once did. That being the case I’d like to see a lot more of this kind of thing in states where we can pull it off and as we have the legislatures in many states that went Obama we can do it and the left, at the moment, can’t.

People (well the left) might say it’s not fair, well TOUGH! It is explicitly constitutional and all the media hype or complaints in the world doesn’t change it.

If Pennsylvania wants to give their votes proportionally they can do it and if the democrats don’t like it they can win seats in the legislature and stop it.

Because if the GOP legislature in Pennsylvania were really serious they could allocate electors in the state based on the popular vote results in Wyoming or by a vote of attendees at CPAC 2013, (they could charge $1,000,000 a head and sell out every time) or perhaps a majority vote of the authors at DaTechGuy blog with ties being decided by the owner.

And it would be perfectly legal and constitutional.

It sure would make me a lot more popular.

Two years ago when I had my road trip with Stacy McCain we hit the PA-10 race where Tom Mario was trying to win his first term in the house.

While in PA I met one of the most experienced political people I ever met Hughey (pronounced Huey) Woodring who accurately told us what was going to happen in the state that year.

This year I knew I wasn’t going to be able to hit PA so before I left the house I gave a call to Hughey to find out what the situation was down there, both for the Marino re-elect effort and for the state in general.

Hughey was surprised to hear from me, he started by telling me Tom Marino is looking very safe for re-election in his slightly redrawn 10th district. Real Clear Politics apparently agrees as they don’t even list PA-10 as a race on their radar.

This is significant, he is a freshman running for re-election in a presidential year in a state that Obama took the last tie, if after a hard-fought campaign in 2010 Marino is safe and sound in 2012 that means the 10th is looking pretty good for the GOP.

I asked about the presidential race, after all Paul Ryan had already visited the state and he told things look pretty promising for Romney, in fact he thinks Mitt is going to pull it off. I asked him if the lack of the voter ID law being enforced would hurt in that regard but he still thins Mitt is going to manage it.

Remember Hughey has been doing this longer than I’ve been alive, if he thinks Pennsylvania is in play you had better believe it’s in play.

And if it’s in play in 2012 WITHOUT the voter ID law to keep people honest can you imagine what will happen in 2014 & 16 when the “old-fashioned” tactics of the various city machines have a wrench in them?

Be afraid Democrats, be very afraid

(note this post will be cross posted as soon as my other site is back up)

Update: Main site is back up, I’ll be re-post this there later.

Update 2: Think Pennsylvania isn’t in play? Reuters disagrees

Ann Koberna, a Democratic activist and former school teacher in the Philadelphia suburb of Doylestown, did not need a poll or ads to see that support for Obama was eroding ahead of next Tuesday’s election.

She noticed it just after the first debate, on October 3, which boosted Romney’s national poll numbers after his strong performance. All of a sudden, she said, Romney-Ryan lawn signs started popping up in Doylestown and now they are all over the place.

Be afraid Democrats, be very afraid.

We are now a week away from election day and the MSM has been given a gift called Sandy.

Why do I call it a gift to the MSM? Because it gives them a story that overwhelms all others allowing them to put the election on the second or third tier as Romney continues his march.

I have been telling you for a while that the best way to determine what is happening is what people are saying, vs what people are doing.

Yesterday I was listening to Rush on a Minnesota radio station because all the local stations were all Sandy all the time and what did to my wondering eyes did appear but news of Bill Clinton going right there.

Now let’s be clear, There is the president, there is VP and there is Bill Clinton, these are the big guns for the Democrats and are not deployed lightly.

You are sending the single most valuable non-office asset the Democrats have to Minnesota? Not Colorado? Not Nevada, not Wisconsin, not Iowa, not Virginia but MINNESOTA?

How on earth do you justify this move with a week to go unless Obama is in trouble there and if Obama is in trouble in Minnesota then….

As for Pennsylvania we Reported Paul Ryan has done events there, which tells you plenty remember Time is the one commodity you can’t get more of and if Ryan was campaigning in PA last week that means something. Now both sides are spending money in the state but with a difference. The GOP money is a super pac outside of the campaign, the Obama money is DIRECTLY FROM THE CAMPAIGN.

If the White house is spending its limited funds in Pennsylvania then that says…

Finally Florida, the big swing state what are we hearing about Florida.


Florida WAS a swing state, it was a state everyone spend a lot of time talking about how Paul Ryan was going to drive seniors away from the party.

None of this has happened. This state is in now a Romney State

If the game is no longer being played in Florida and is now being played in Minnesota & Pennsylvania know what that says?

“Ride right through them, they’re demoralized as hell”!

And if you don’t believe they are demoralized as hell, look at the faces of the MSM.

Stacy who is on the ground in Ohio gets it:

Yesterday, Jim Messina called the Romney super-PAC’s ad buy in Pennsylvania “desperate.” Today? Yeah, Obama’s buying ads in Pennsylvania.

Does this mean Romney is going to win Pennsylvania? No, but it does mean that it’s close enough that Team Obama couldn’t afford to let Romney air ads unopposed in Pennsylvania. And this news, coming just four days after it was reported that Team Obama is buying ads in Minnesota, is the best indication that Democrat insiders know that the president’s re-election is seriously endangered.

Guys, Romney is going to win this race and it’s not going to be close.

As a result of such tactics the vote from the Valley rarely displayed the diversity of opinion associated with a democracy; some 15,000 votes were generally believed to be controlled in the Valley, and it was not unusual for them to go to a favored candidate by margins as large as ten to one.

Robert Caro: The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power 1982 P722

I talked about the left’s rush to go after the Pennsylvania voter ID law in my last post,. It’s worth noting that as the left wails loudly over the Pennsylvania law New Hampshire another swing state approved a similar law back on June 28th.

In New Hampshire, different forms of identification are accepted, or residents have the option of signing an affidavit. The list will be shortened in 2013, and student ID cards and documents more than five years old will no longer be accepted.

This law took effect yesterday and for some reason it isn’t producing the same reaction among our friends on the left that the Pennsylvania law does.


If this is a question of voter disenfranchisement aren’t NH voters worth the same outcry as Pennsylvania? Do they not deserve the same angst as their larger brothers to the south?

The difference might be in the electoral vote count (NH has but 4) but perhaps NH’s Voter ID law doesn’t scare them as much because it doesn’t have large Democrat run cities that the Keystone State has. To wit:

the potential problem is much bigger, particularly in Philadelphia, where 186,830 registered voters – 18 percent of the city’s total registration – do not have PennDot ID.

Hmmm it would seem voters in cities have an ID problem. That’s strange to me. Why would a person in a city have less a need for an ID? In a city environment with a larger bureaucracy and less personal knowledge of the individual such ID would seem more necessary for life rather than less.

Even stranger this problem only seems to be evident among people who are inclined to vote for democrats. Note this editorial concerning the law

Second comes the GOP’s own admission — conveniently after the fact, of course — that their agenda was indeed political. The moment came last month at a GOP State Committee meeting, when House Republican Majority Leader Mike Turzai recounted Republicans’ legislative accomplishments for the year. Among them, Turzai announced to enthusiastic applause: “Voter ID — which is going to allow Gov. Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania — done.”

Pennsylvania didn’t need the voter ID law. There was no credible evidence of voters impersonating other voters at the polls. There was one reason, and one reason only, to pass the new requirement, and it wasn’t the security of the ballot. It was the outcome of the election. We knew it all along. Now the GOP House leader has put it out there for everyone to see.

What our frenzied editorialist doesn’t do is answer a basic question, a question that any reasonable person might ask:

Why should producing an ID change the result of any election?

Why should the use of an item needed at any bank, to cash any paycheck or government check, to use a credit card, an item you are asked to produce at a hospital, at a supermarket or even to buy booze cause the results of an election to change? Do Democrats need these ID less that republicans?

What could possibility be going on that would cause the passage of a strong voter ID law backed by an Army of Davids equipped with iPhones and internet connections along with an energized Tea Party with volunteers willing and able to serve as poll watchers to strike such fear into the hearts of Democrat leaning Union Stewards and Machine Pols who in the past have managed to deliver their precincts to their party by overwhelming margins?

I suspect the people screaming the loudest know the answer and that’s why they are screaming.

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It was easy for all of us to disappear. My house was in my Mother-in-Law’s name. My cars were registered to my wife. My social security card and driver licenses were phonies. I never voted I never paid taxes. My birth certificate and my arrest sheet that’s all you’d ever have to know I was alive.

Good Fellas 1990

One of the things you find a lot in politics is “battlefield preparation”, the attempt to create a meme and then have it become conventional wisdom. A great example of this was the “Billion Dollar Man” business with the president that bluffed a lot of people into thinking Barack Obama would be invincible.

But now that the days of panhandling at weddings are upon us and the bad economic news continues for the Obama campaign a new set of Memes are being prepared. One set is evidenced by the unified wailing and gnashing of teeth by the left over Pennsylvania’s voter ID law.

Talking Points Memo:

Hundreds of thousands of potential voters here were left scrambling in the wake of Pennsylvania’s voter ID law — enough to prompt speculation as to whether the law could change the outcome of the election in November.

But one thing is clear: The law is already having a dramatic effect on how the election is being waged.

CBS News:

New data released by Pennsylvania officials suggests that as many as 750,000 voters in the crucial battleground territory could be impacted by a stringent new voter ID law.

The law, passed this May ostensibly to prevent voter fraud, requires all voters in Pennsylvania to show a valid photo ID at the polls.

Huff post:

While supporters argued that it was a simple measure meant to combat voter fraud, figures released this week show that the law may affect more than 750,000 Pennsylvanians who don’t currently possess identification cards issued by the state Department of Transportation.

The breathless declarations of disenfranchisement of a 3/4 of a million voters are based on the number of people who don’t have drivers licenses, however while the left rages against the machine lets look at what is actually needed in PA for ID off the State’s web site:

Acceptable IDs include:

♦  Photo IDs issued by the U.S. Federal Government or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania:
Pennsylvania driver’s license or

♦  non-driver’s license photo ID (IDs are valid for voting purposes 12 months past expiration date)

♦  Valid U.S. passport

♦  U.S. military ID – active duty and retired military (a military or veteran’s ID must designate an expiration date or designate that the expiration date is indefinite). Military dependents’ ID must contain an expiration date

♦  Employee photo ID issued by Federal, PA, County or Municipal government
♦  Photo ID cards from an accredited Pennsylvania public or private institution of higher learning
♦  Photo ID cards issued by a Pennsylvania care facility, including long-term care facilities, assisted living residences or personal care homes

SEVEN count them SEVEN different forms of ID acceptable that are not drivers licenses, while you’re digesting that let me note in their eagerness to cry foul they leave out one other item of note:

If you do not bring your ID on Election Day, vote with a provisional ballot. Don’t leave without voting!

So if you don’t have your ID on you or if there is a glitch you can vote with a provisional ballot which can be counted if it can be verified that you are who you say you are and eligible to vote. If that is the case why is there such a fuss?

I suspect the reason is this: When November comes around, explanations are going to be required by those donors who gave and the true believers who worked. It’s going to be a lot easier to sell “voter disenfranchisement” to the liberal base than: “Our candidates and ideas stink.”

Which is why I say

“Ride right through them, they’re demoralized as hell”!

and we haven’t even touched on the biggest issues the left has with these laws, but that’s for my next post…

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