About Me

My photo
Nazareth, Pa., United States

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Independents: You Can Still Vote In Next Week's Primary (Updated 9:27 am)

Pennsylvania is a closed primary state, so you can't vote for any of the candidates seeking their party's nomination unless you yourself are a member of that party. But there is one ballot question being considered in the Lehigh Valley - abolishing Philadelphia's Traffic Court.

Why do we vote on the Philadelphia Traffic Courts? Because it involves a change in the Pennsylvania Constitution. The Committee of Seventy, Philly Bar Ass'n, Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts and Inky all support the abolition of Traffic Court.

How should you vote? Here's what The Inky says:
The freewheeling former Philadelphia Traffic Court, where tickets were fixed for gifts of crab cakes and porn or just to keep political bosses happy, could soon be officially relegated to the history books where it belongs. As voters contemplate whether to abolish a court that brought so little justice and so much embarrassment to the city, they should consider the real justice that was visited upon the court.

Traffic Court was so corrupt that a federal jury found four of its judges guilty of lying to a grand jury or the FBI in a sprawling ticket-fixing case. Three more pleaded guilty to fixing tickets, one of them in exchange for the seafood and dirty DVDs. Another, found not guilty in the ticket-fixing case, pleaded guilty to separate tax charges.
There had been a second ballot question raising the mandatory retirement ages for judges from age 70 to age 75. Concern over the wording of the question has prompted a delay.

According to Lehigh County Register of Elections Timothy Benyo, the mandatory retirement age question will remain on the ballot because some state senators have questioned the legality of this delay


Anonymous said...

Thanks for edukatin us Bernie. Now I will have a clue when I see this on the ballot.

FRED said...

Bernie - Do you know what would take the place of Philly's traffic courts then? They don't have MDJ's to my knowledge.



Bernie O'Hare said...

They do have muncicipal judges.

Anonymous said...

But what do all of the "constitutionalists" have to say?