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Democratic ward leaders endorse slates for judge

The city's Democratic organization gives formal endorsements to a dozen candidates for judge, while urging voters to re-elect the incumbent DA and city controller.

There were no surprises Tuesday as the city's Democratic ward leaders convened to endorse the recommendations of top party leaders for a dozen vacant judgeships and the races for DA and city controller.

Both DA Seth Williams and Controller Alan Butkovitz were endorsed for new four-year terms.

The six party endorsements for Common Pleas Court went to Timika Lane, Dan McCaffery, Giovanni Campbell, Dawn Tancredi, Leon King and Daine Grey.  All the names but Grey's had surfaced previously as the choices of the party's "policy committee".

The three candidates to get party backing for Municipal Court are Martin Coleman, Henry Lewandowski and Fran Shields.

For three spots in Traffic Court, the ward leaders endorsed Omar Sabir, Marnie Loughery and Donna DeRose.

Theoretically, all the endorsed candidates will be carried on "official" Democratic sample ballots, to be distributed outside primary election polling places on May 21.

Practically speaking, there's a long history of ward leaders and others printing similar sample ballots  with different sets of names, "cutting" one or more of the party candidates in favor of others who've done something to curry favor with whoever printed the ballots.

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