Fontana opponent quits Senate race: "Reached in Pittsburgh after the hearing, Mr. Fontana said his opponent 'obviously didn't want the judge to go through those signatures. He knew a lot of them were wrong, otherwise he would have gone through them.'There is NO WAY that "a lot of the signatures on the petitions" had been signed by the same person." No way, no how, no sir.
Mr. Fontana also said it appeared that a lot of the signatures on the petitions had been signed by the same person."
A lot of the signers to the petition were "out of the district" because all the petition signers were offering their name up for a dual purpose -- and all of the signers were then (because of the dual purpose) were only requried to be of Allegheny County. The 42nd district is a sub-set of Allegheny County, as is the city of Pittsburgh.
For everyone's information, the 42nd disrict spans about one third of the city of Pittsburgh and about one-third of Allegheny County. The 42nd includes parts of South Side, Brentwood, but not Mt. Oliver, Brookline, but not Carrick, Baldwin Boro, but not Baldwin Township, the Bluff, but not The Hill, The Strip District, but not Lawrencevill nor Polish Hill, the lower west part of the North Side but not the east, Doormont, but not Mt. Lebo, and parts west to McKees Rocks, home to Catherine Baker Knoll and only Democracts and Montour School District, but not Moon's.
The top of all of "MY" nomination papers had "Russ Diamond" candidate for governor. This wasn't really about "Mark Rauterkus" as much as it was about putting up an alternative to Rendell and Swann -- as well as State Senate.
The intention was to cast a 'wide net' with the gathering of signatures. The signatures that were alleged to be 'wrong' were not wrong at all when you look at the complete purpose of the nomination papers for being an independent for a political body -- which I was.
This summer's petition exercise on my part made for a classic "double edge sword." With one signature, citizens were able to help me if and when they were proven to reside in the 42nd district. However, the other edge was also in play and the signature would have counted if and when the counting began for INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE for GOVERNOR.
My signatures, all of them, 85 pages, were turned into the Board of Elections, days in advance of the deadline of August 1.
My signatures were turned into the state days before RUSS DIAMOND ended his effort to get onto the ballot by raising 68,000 signatures. Meanwhile, the nearly 1,000 valid signatures I delivered to that cause were already delivered to the state and delivered by the citizens.
Parable with the excercise of a 'double edge sword' also has point. The point is most important and I told that to the reporter, Tom Barnes, of the Post-Gazette, after the hearing and before the hearing and to others at the P-G newsroom, Sunday, and Monday. Mr. O'Toole, where are you -- vacation???? ---- ????
Jon Delano, KDKA TV, is on vacation this week. He was interested in the 'point.'
Wayne Fontana, knocked me out of the race. However, his political career might have been mortally wounded -- like he fell on the point of the sword.
The fax number of the Senate office of the 42nd District -- and the description of the office title, much more than just the 717-fax number, were clearly visible on the top of the papers that were delivered to me by hand delivery from a constible (which was after the court ordered summons deadline on noon on Friday).
That needs some explanation.
The ballot challenge paperwork that came from an attorney in central PA on behalf of a petitioner, Daniel J. O'Shea of Allegheny County (Scott Township), Wayne's long-time friend and campaign Treasurer and member of the Dem Committee -- also seems to have passed through and been crafted by or in part my state senator's office.
This fax time stamp was at 3 pm on a MONDAY -- in business time.
This fax time stamp from the PA Senate 42nd District office comes on paperwork that makes a chain that ended with me and my removal from the ballot.
This was a political hit job. In my opinion, and in the opinion of many others, including the judge at the hearing, this type of work is not permitted to be done within the realm of the official state office. He showed interest in this fact but said it was for another day -- not for counting signatures.
So, he let me put MY copy of the ballot challenge into the official public record. My copy of the challenge was DIFFERNT and UNLIKE the one that they served to the court. Someone there screwed up.
What landed before me had evidence of their slime and political corruption -- much like what put Jeff Habay, former state rep, in a jail cell.
You NEVER EVER DO political work, and this is of the highest order political work, to squash democracy on official papers served to a citizen activist for tampering with an election, from within the OFFICE of the people.
I felt as if I was challenged by O'Shea (the petitioner), the attorney, and the office of the 42nd District --- and now in the P-G by the Senator himself.
No where and at no time was there even a hint that a lot of the signatures on the petitions had been signed by the same person.
And just to be totally honest, in one instance, one guy happened to sign the petition twice -- in different settings and days (if not weeks) apart.
Wayne Fontana is, as the P-G reports, virtually assured to be elected to a 4-year term after winning a rigged election on November 7 because I pulled off the ballot -- but Wayne Fontana is also virtually assured to come up before charges with the STATE ETHICS BOARD in these matters.
Keep talking Wayne -- the file gets thicker.
Yesterday, I asked the court to put Wayne Fontana's name on the official challenge as a co-petitioner along with his buddy O'Shea. Fontana was not in the courtroom in Harrisburg, nor was his buddy. They stood behind their hired attorney. They both had a 'failure to appear.'
By the way, I've been trying to reach Mr. Fontana for days. He hasn't called me back.
(click comments to get the entire PG story)