Democrats Flock to Philly on Eve of Primary Election

The Democratic candidates for governor concentrated on vote-rich Philadelphia on Monday, their last full day of the primary campaign before voters decide whom to nominate to take on Republican Gov. Tom Corbett in the fall.

All four Democrats spent some or all of Monday meeting voters at train stations, businesses and shopping malls.
Front-runner Tom Wolf took a walking tour of downtown Lancaster with Mayor Rick Gray, shaking dozens of hands along the way, before heading to Philadelphia to meet commuters at Suburban Station.

U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, state Treasurer Rob McCord and former state environmental protection secretary Katie McGinty spent the day campaigning in the state's largest city. McCord also staged a get-out-the-vote evening event at the headquarters of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776 in Montgomery County with former Congressman Joe Hoeffel.
About 806,000 registered Democrats live in Philadelphia, or 1 in 5 in all of Pennsylvania. Counting Philadelphia's four suburban counties, Pennsylvania's southeastern corner is home to almost 2 in 5 Democrats in the state.

Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. in Tuesday's primary election. Pollsters expect about 1 million registered Democrats, or 1 in 4 in Pennsylvania, to vote in the primary, an estimate in line with the state's last two contested Democratic gubernatorial primaries.
The Democrats spent more than $31 million on the hotly contested primary through May 5 and were on track to make it the state's most expensive gubernatorial primary.

Wolf, a wealthy businessman from York County making his first bid for public office, has held a commanding lead in the polls and has outspent his competitors, largely thanks to the $10 million he gave to his campaign. The other three Democrats live in Philadelphia's suburbs.
McGinty, who served as an environmental adviser in Bill Clinton's White House, also is making her first run for public office. McCord, a former venture capitalist, has served as treasurer since 2009. Schwartz has served in Congress since 2005, following 14 years in the state Senate and a career before that in public health in Philadelphia.

The candidates, including Corbett, have marshaled more than $50 million in campaign cash for the election, starting last year, and donations continue to pour in. The campaigns reported receiving more than $1 million in contributions since the state's last reporting deadline on May 5, and they kept up the online appeals for campaign cash even on Monday.
The biggest contributor in the last two weeks was the state Republican Party, giving more than $345,000 to Corbett's campaign, while Wolf picked up another $150,000 from Tim Grumbacher, chairman of the Bon-Ton Stores. Grumbacher gave Wolf $1 million last year.
Corbett and Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley have no opposition in the Republican primary.

Also on tap in Tuesday's primary is the race among five candidates for lieutenant governor -- former U.S. Rep. Mark Critz, of Johnstown, Harrisburg City Councilman Brad Koplinski, Washington County state Rep. Brandon Neuman, Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith and Philadelphia state Sen. Michael Stack -- and several fights for party nominations to run for Congress.
That includes contests to determine the Democratic and Republican Party nominees to run for the 13th District seat in southeastern Pennsylvania being vacated by Schwartz. The voter registration in the district leans heavily Democratic, making the winner of the party's four-way primary fight the likely successor to Schwartz.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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