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Why voting habits in Pa. aren’t likely to change | Morning Newsletter

And, schools around Philly region have very different approaches to the pandemic.

    The Morning Newsletter

    Start your day with the Philly news you need and the stories you want all in one easy-to-read newsletter

Good morning. Philadelphia’s temperatures are expected to dip way down this morning, but the chill is only temporary. OK, let’s get into the stories of the day.

First: Pennsylvania’s voters showed up in record-smashing numbers for both Donald Trump and Joe Biden and we saw a stark partisan divide in how they voted. Our story gets at why that voting habit split is not going away.

Then: Go inside the Pennsylvania courtroom where Rudy Giuliani returned to contest the election with an argument that was head-scratching for the observers but drew high praise from Trump supporters.

Plus: Procedural discrepancies between schools when it comes to safety protocols are creating some confusion. Our story covers what’s at the heart of these varying responses.

And also: We’ve got the latest helpful coronavirus resources, all in one place.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_ashleyhoffman,

The majority of the Biden votes in Pennsylvania were cast by mail, and most of the Trump votes were cast in person.

Specifically, roughly as many as three out of every four mail votes went to Biden, while as many as two-thirds of in-person votes went to Trump — and it’s likely that this split in voting habits isn’t going away.

Let’s look ahead to the long-standing impact of this divide.

Rudy Giuliani spent almost six hours in a federal courtroom Tuesday continuing the Trump campaign’s barrage of unsuccessful legal challenges to Pennsylvania’s election results, and he did it presenting unfounded allegations of a nationwide conspiracy to steal the 2020 election that went beyond even what the campaign has already tried to argue.

As Giuliani periodically contradicted himself in his own arguments, opposing counsel Mark Aronchick couldn’t resist working in a Four Seasons Total Landscaping jab — circling back to an episode that held the internet’s attention for a while after a wrenching week.

“When you’re in court, you have to talk about the facts, you have to talk about the law. When you’re at Four Seasons Total Landscaping, I guess you can talk about anything,” Aronchick said.

The former New York City mayor did come away with one thing from the judge on his visit to Pennsylvania. A recommendation for a Williamsport martini bar 🍸.

Different schools are doing things differently. That’s because in some cases, schools throughout Philly and the elected officials, health departments, and outside experts guiding them through this time are taking vastly different approaches as coronavirus cases surge.

These disparate responses are leaving parents and staff confused about the best course of action.

The debate on whether to go back to virtual learning is happening as CHOP PolicyLab experts say the infection rates among children are on the rise. Hear from parents and decision-makers around the city about what’s happening.

Helpful COVID-19 Resources

What you need to know today

  1. The Pa. Supreme Court moved yesterday to intervene in Trump’s effort to throw out mail ballots filed incorrectly by legal voters.

  2. The 76ers traded Al Horford — and his massive contract — in exchange for sharpshooter Danny Green, who just won a championship with the Los Angeles Lakers. They also added another player to their backcourt in Wednesday night’s NBA Draft, selecting Tyrese Maxey with the 21st pick. Here’s what columnist David Murphy had to say.

  3. This morning, temperatures are due to fall to the mid-20s for the first time since March 1.

  4. It may be time to get yourself a new fabric mask. The more you use it and wash it, the less effective it becomes. But when you need to replace yours depends on a few factors. Here’s what you need to know.

  5. The six-week shutdown comes at the pivotal holiday shopping time for businesses. Fearing how devastating a “year without Christmas” could be, some Philadelphia businesses are pushing back.

  6. The men accused in the killing of Philly Police Cpl. James O’Connor IV will face trial for murder and related charges.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

We see you, Crescent Moon, getting your shine on. Thank you for sharing, @lightbender_photo.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout-out!

That’s interesting

  1. 💡 Peco is putting an end to its well-received program that paid customers to let it cycle central air-conditioning systems on and off to cut down on energy consumption.

  2. 🍽️ We talked to Philly’s restaurant-industry workers who are wondering what will be left of the landscape when shutdown purgatory is over.

  3. 🍠 Food writer Jenn Ladd takes us beyond the butternut for 10 other kinds of winter squash to make this year.

  4. 🥡 This beloved University City Chinese food truck is closing after 37 years of noodle-slinging service.

  5. 🐽 A comfy, cozy pig-shaped couch that made a stir on Craigslist isn’t actually for sale, but it is real and is the work of a Philly artist. We tracked her down for an interview about this porcine furniture.


“With such attention on the area, locals have an important message for visitors: While you’re there as a tourist, be a good tourist. Make it a point to support the local businesses — don’t just stop by for selfies and then head to Center City or whichever recently gentrified neighborhood you had in mind. The neighborhood has much more to offer than a landscaping company next to a sex shop.” - Cher Mollé, a member of the Holmesburg Community Development Corporation’s Board of Directors, has a message to deliver to those tourists breezing by Four Seasons Total Landscaping for the selfie opportunity of a lifetime: Be a good tourist.

  1. This year has made feeling thankful complex, but it’s all the more important now. We want to hear from you about this, and we’ll publish select responses to one question. What are you grateful for this Thanksgiving?

  2. The Inquirer Editorial Board writes about the progress Joe Biden will need to make for a greener future.

What we’re reading

  1. WHYY covers how SEPTA won’t issue fines or citations to people who don’t follow the mandatory mask-wearing as Amtrak and NYC’s MTA adopt tougher fines and policies.

  2. A “mask tree” is growing in Kensington. BillyPenn has the details.

  3. Gothamist has the story of the rogue owl who got into the holiday spirit by scoring a free ride from Upstate New York to New York City on the Rockefeller Christmas tree.

Your Daily Dose of | Squid

James Bond has had some sweet rides, but who can think about him when there’s a squid biologist driving around town in an actual Squidmobile?

Sarah McAnulty drives around Philly in the above Toyota RAV4 covered in squid drawings and the words “WANT A SQUID FACT? Text 9-RUNG-SQUID.” People contact the squid-fact hotline for all kinds of reasons, but the point of the Squidmobile is to make science accessible.

Talk about transportation goals.