Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Huge Surprise From Philly Proper

From the Philadelphia Daily News:

A lonely GOP stronghold

Philadelphia Republicans can take one slim measure of solace in the election results that carried Obama to a 460,000-vote city margin over John McCain: For the first time since 1988 a Republican presidential candidate carried a Philadelphia ward.

It's the 26th ward, a big chunk of South Philadelphia sitting west of Broad Street and south of Passyunk, to the Schuylkill.

McCain carried the 26th with 52.7 percent of the vote, a 556-vote lead over Obama with provisional and absentee ballots still to be counted.

"If you look at voting patterns in all the national elections, it's probably the most conservative ward in the city," says Democratic ward leader Ron Donatucci, the city's register of wills. "We've got a high concentration of senior citizens and three Catholic churches, a lot of pro-life voters . . . I was a little surprised. I thought it [the margin for McCain] would be even bigger."

George H. W. Bush, the father of the current President, carried the 26th and 17 other Philadelphia wards when he beat Michael Dukakis in 1988. Bush 41 lost the city by 230,000 votes but won Pennsylvania by 105,000.

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