Progressives held their ground with Krasner

In the end, it wasn’t even close.

In the end, as usually is the case, the incumbent had the advantage.

In the end, incumbent progressive District Attorney Larry Krasner beat his traditional liberal challenger, Carlos Vega, by a 2-1 margin in a predictably low turnout race. The turnout was 17.6%, according to the City Commissioners.

In the end, Krasner doubled his vote total from the 2017 primary, where he had six opponents, from 59,358 to Tuesday’s total of 103,195 (preliminary figures). Out of 1 million registered voters. So Krasner’s “mandate” is 10% of Philadelphians. But he won.

In the end, as predicted, the more traditional Northeast, the River Wards and a large pocket of South Philly went for Vega, while the rest of the city wanted Krasner — with turnout being good in progressive Black wards.

With his re-election, Philadelphia progressives proved they could hold on to an office — even though more than 3/4s of Krasner’s financial support came from outside the city — a lot from the West Coast — from people who don’t have to live with the consequences of Krasner’s troubled policies. 

Progressive billionaire George Soros gave less this time than last.

In the end, if I were a denizen of the far left, I would cast this as a racist vote to secure the privilege of a white supremacist.

“Racist” because a brown man lost to a white man, and “white supremacist” because all white people are racist, according to what’s known as critical race theory.

But I don’t play that sick game.

The vote may not have been racist, but it was undeniably anti-cop, which is why the FOP tried so hard to beat Krasner.

Using his incumbency, and the same people who supported him last time, Krasner outperformed Vega, despite a near 40% increase in homicides on his watch, despite not getting the endorsement from the Democratic City Committee, despite not getting the progressive mayor’s endorsement, despite popular politician Ed Rendell endorsing Vega. 

It is a tribute to the blind, one-mindedness of progressives who agree there should be no consequences for failure.

Even his supporters admitted Krasner was “not perfect,” which was the understatement of the race. “Not perfect” is code for falling short.

I go back to the anti-cop sentiment to try to explain why more Black people voted for the white guy than the brown guy, given that the brown guy’s views were traditionally liberal. It’s not like Vega is a conservative. He’s nowhere close.

I have to conclude that Black people who voted for Krasner are more afraid of the police than they are of the Black murderers in the midst.

That’s a terrible conclusion. Almost 80% of homicide victims were Black, according to 2017 statistics, and it is higher now. Almost every perpetrator of these crimes is Black.

My liberal Center City ward went for Krasner. My neighbors read about the murder rate but they don’t feel it. What happens in the killing fields of North, West and Southwest Philly is like South Sudan to them.

Krasner was credibly accused of undercharging homicide suspects and of turning loose dangerous suspects or convicts. This was known and the main reason Vega ran. 

Not enough people cared. 

Now it’s up to Republican Chuck Peruto to make the uphill case. No Republican has won for D.A. since 1985 when Ron Castille captured the vacant office, with no incumbent.

Expect Peruto to come out swinging. His only hope is to get the traditional voters off their asses and into the polling booth.

In the end, that’s the only thing that can make that race close.

25 thoughts on “Progressives held their ground with Krasner”

  1. I always sight( my beloved) wife as the litmus test of relevance to the social media indoctrinated.As I went to vote for Vega yesterday she had no idea who he was or why Krasner is a problem .For my woke neighbors the fact that Krasner reeks of smug arrogant white privelege is strangely a nonstarter.Their kids aren’t getting shot.

  2. Thank goodness we’re putting the condo up for sale and getting outta here. Philadelphia is falling to sh-t.

    1. That was pretty much us 4 years ago. Unfortunately, one can’t waste their years away trying to swim against a tide. There isn’t enough people who care or enough of them that vote. We’re much happier now enjoying our daily lives in peace. Good luck!

  3. Philadelphia, PA

    Dear Stu,

    Thanks for your thought on the outcome of the race for the Democratic nomination for D.A.

    One of your comments struck me as particularly interesting. You wrote:

    My liberal Center City ward went for Krasner. My neighbors read about the murder rate but they don’t feel it. What happens in the killing fields of North, West and Southwest Philly is like South Sudan to them.
    —end quotation—

    I think of this as a kind of social-political “disassociation.” It’s like the situations in which we say “the one hand does not know what the other is doing.” Or, for instance, on some of our local highways, you can drive through the worst neighborhoods in the area and never see them, because walls have been put up along the way which effectively block the view. The prosperous citizen can drive from one prosperous area to another while ignoring the unpleasantness in between.

    I’ve often encountered the idea, perhaps from some of your “liberal” neighbors?, that nothing can be done about the crime and poverty in the city, it’s taken as almost a “natural” condition. It needs no analysis or explanation?

    There are two chief elements of such “disassociation”: one consists of not knowing much about obvious problems and the other consists in not caring to know much about them. The focus of attention and engagement is elsewhere (say, monitoring various investments?), following “the next big thing,” etc. In any case, the common, public interest in solving problems which directly affect the poorest in the city is largely ignored. This leaves the field open and clear for the radical “progressives.”

    The gap between the upper-middle class and ordinary working people in the city seems to grow by the day. Yet they vote more or less the same way.

    I’m inclined to ask, once again, Why is it exactly that Philadelphia is the poorest of the 10 largest cities in the country? I suppose that if we do not understand that, we will understand little else of what goes on politically.

    H.G. Callaway

    1. I don’t think the not caring is restricted to the nicer well off areas of Philly. We lived in North Philly in an area where one of our neighbors got shot across the street. Where my husband’s car and our living room window had bullet holes in it. There’s a lot of good people there. Unfortunately, there’s not enough of them that vote or care either. This is why after over a decade of trying to fight for the community, we packed our bags, sold our home and left. Sometimes, you can’t help people that don’t want to help themselves.

  4. Good critique of the election and I would add two other points. One is the police took center stage as the black community despite every study to the contrary accepted the belief that there is widespread killing of unarmed black men. Once you imbed that thought the second point equating the number of black men in prison and everyday alleged abuse by the police are also being inflicted on the black community. Denial becomes easy when it comes to blacks killing blacks especially when most are single and are part of a criminal culture. Finally the media is also a winner by setting out with an agenda of how the job performance of progressives is successful and the police are running rampant in the streets without any controls. The years ahead are going to be very uneasy for everybody as our society grapples with public safety, cultural diversity and a list of progressive changes that over time will hurt the black community. Other than the police the major loser yesterday are the 90 % who saw fit to ignore the one right that is the cornerstone of our democracy the right to vote.

    ( not for Philly )
    The person that knows how to reach the voter usually wins. All of your points are well taken – by us “privileged” people. The bloggers above understand the situation.
    Chuck Peruto and his team had better do a better job than the Vega team. I haven’t heard much from Peruto after he declared, but he better get knocking on doors today. He better become HIGHLY visible from here on out. Peruto needs to be seen at every possible venue. Kissing babies. Eating every ethnic delicacy. little league games. Soccer games. Where ever people gather, so better he .

  6. Less than one in five voters turned out to vote for DA. Maybe crime isn’t that big a deal to the residents of the city. Disgraceful.

  7. The funny thing about this column, and all the comments, is that it lobs the accusation against voters that they are out of touch, or in the words of one commenter, disassociated from reality. And yet there is no explanation why it is that the people who put their bets on a guy who got shellacked in his race are not disconnected or out of touch. We aren’t talking here about a hair split, where one could argue that there is a genuine divide on direction. That was the argument in 2017, when the claim was that Krasner won only because of a crowded field, and that if he faced a single opponent he would not be able to float by on a plurality. And yet not only did Krasner win, he won by leaps and bounds, with the FOP flushing large sums of money down the drain making their own preferred candidate worse. I would suggest the people who backed the person who got trounced are the ones disconnected from reality because by the biggest objective measure, the vote totals, they evidently are out of step with over 60% of their fellow citizens.

    1. Sean S., I agree with your arguments but, unfortunately, you will find we are in the extreme minority here.

    You are welcome to your opinion – you earned it and I’ll bet that you voted.
    I don’t know if you follow Stu’s blog on a regular basis and I certainly don’t know if you contribute on any basis. If you do follow Stu, you know that he and we have been around for awhile. Some of us, a long while. You will also gather that we are mostly conservative, without being blinded by the politics. Adding to that, you will gather that we have seen political figures come and go. We have lived through some of the best times and certainly through some of the worst. Old saying: If he’s out of work, it’s a recession. If you’re out of work, it’s a depression .
    Because of our past – which we learned from, we see ” the writing on the wall”. We know why there is crime. We know how to stop crime. We know that people kill people, not guns killing people. We know that anything other than real democracy in a republic such as ours does not work. If it has a ‘ism’ at the end, it definitely does not work if you are in the middle class. The rich don’t care, nor do they have to. The poverty level doesn’t know enough to care. They get what’s given to them. And that is one of the biggest problems today. Put out your hand ! We Owe You !
    This barely touches on my opinion. If you care to digest it, then follow up on the basics. We believe that it’s a fairly easy concept to grasp. We have a Constitution that guarantees us certain rights. In turn, it is our duty and responsibility to work for what we get. Defend our country because we owe our being to America. Fight against tyranny and injustice, because your God said so.
    I Love our Country. I put on the uniform once before and I’ll do it again as long as there is breath in me.

  9. Anthony,

    I’m not entirely sure what anything you said has to do with my central argument, namely that losing a race by an over 30% spread is a clear mandate. You may dislike that mandate, which apparently you do, but it is nonetheless a mandate and one given by a broad cross section of Philly. There’s not enough “rich” people, however you define it, to simply hand a municipal election to someone.

    Also Peruto has the slight problem of having to explain how one of his staff ended up dead in his bathtub. Hell they even made a TV movie about it. That’s not a serious candidate there.

      Often I don’t make myself clear enough. I try not to write volumes, but then again, I have much to say.
      My point with the numbers – and I don’t disagree, is that this has always been the case. People can’t be bothered to vote. Republicans will never be strong again, because they don’t think that they have a chance at the poll. Yet, talking one on one, they are very much in favor of conservatism. They do understand that the dims love to tax and spend and that has been their mantra for decades. Historically, they throw a bone to the worker and the unemployed. They blow hot air into any semblance of logic to get the vote. At least, way back when, those running for city office would promise city jobs to those that elected them. Check it out. All of the above is the reasoning and logic for not voting Republican. I’ve seen it starting in the late ’50s and it hasn’t changed. I certainly don’t know how to “get the vote out ” !
      As for Peruto. I am not surprised that you took a cheap shot at the man. I forget the circumstances and certainly am not about to waste my time researching. I will say this citing an old joke. “A woman is about to be stoned for adultery in Jerusalem. Christ walks up to the crowd and sez, ” Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. A lot of murmuring and disgust as the men walk away. Then a little old lady comes walking up. Grabs the biggest stone that she can lift. Throws it and kills the ?sinner?. Then as she’s walking away, Christ calls out to the old lady, Mom, sometimes you really pi345 me off ” !”
      So, let’s start with your income tax returns and then go on from there, Saint Sean.

    2. Allow me: Krasner’s 103,000 votes out of 1 million registered voters is 10%. Mandate?
      The woman died in a bathtub while Peruto was 60 miles away. The DA investigated and found zero evidence implicating Peruto. Krasner will use it, but it is a flat out lie.

      1. Stu, while I normally agree with you I believe you are incorrect with these two analogies.

        As far as the votes go why are you comparing how many votes Krasner received against how many could have voted but not done the same with Vega? If you extend (extrapolate) the application to include people who did not vote Vega would have suffered a much worse defeat.

        With Peruto, I ask you is it not possible for him to have masterminded the killing without him personally doing it? Are you saying something like that never been done before? What about contract killings and 9/11, just for some examples.

        1. I evaluated Krasner because he won. And some people think he has a mandate.
          As to Peruto masterminding a murder, yes, that is possible. It is also possible Trump won the election.
          I could explain at more depth, but it is a waste of my time to deal with conspiracy theories.

          1. Stu, I was not looking at any possible conspiracies, I was just questioning what you said.

          2. Stu, Seth Williams pleaded guilty to a Federal charge and as part of the plea deal he admitted in court to the other 28 charges, which included other bribery charges, defrauding his mother’s nursing home, stealing from his campaign funds and using government vehicles for personal use. Do you honestly believe what he has said or did?

          3. I am sorry Stu. What I meant to ask you is do you believe what Williams did or said about Peruto, based on him admitting to the Federal charges against him.

    3. How can there be a ‘mandate’ when less than 18% of the people got off their asses to vote? Philadelphia gets the government it deserves.

  10. The RGIC (Racial Grievance Industrial Complex ) was diligent in spreading Larry Krasner’s message of reform. The RZGIC ignored the extraordinary rise in violent crime in the city. Krasner’s continuous policies of low or no bail for individuals arrested for carrying illegal firearms will ensure more shootings and homicides. The residents in Center City and other gentrifying neighborhoods (UC, Fishtown, Strawberry Mansion) will feel the effects of this election the most along with the impacted poverty areas in the city. I believe these election results will be looked back on in the future as the biggest mistake in Philadelphia Election history. This is an example of watch what you wish for, it will come true.

    I think that Aloysius made quite a few good points. I still fail to see anyone close to my theories. Is that because I’m so wrong or could it be that as terrifying as it sounds, I’m right and nobody wants to admit that fact to the public. We sure don’t want to be branded racist or some other phobia .
    To add some credence. As a construction Official, I have worked North Jersey, South Jersey, Philly and a bit in Wilmington. All back in the ’80s and ’90s. I have seen the ghettoes of Newark. The slums of Elizabeth. The wild streets of Camden. Philly – that’s a paragraph by itself. Wilmington had its moments as well. Most of you have never seen danger up close – and I’m glad for you. The problem, however, it makes you naivete to the real world. While you sit in your “ivory tower”, good and bad people are dying in the cities that I just mentioned. I doubt that this following thought has changed very much over the years. Kids in these ghettoes don’t have much of a chance to escape. My age, you could join the Army and go to Vietnam. With so many fatherless homes and really, no home life, the gangs become your family. You see drug dealers with a wad that could choke a horse. You say that you want some of that. That is the real world. Education doesn’t give the kids anything immediately. That dealer probably can’t read or write, but he’s loaded. He gets the chicks cause he’s sitting pretty. And should he get blown away tomorrow night, everybody in the hood will say that he had a good life.
    Very few make it out because of their athletic ability. Fewer still because of their grades. Such a waste of humanity.
    No. I’m not prejudice, or racist. I’ve just seen a lot. Philly was bad before, but with all of the free passes handed out by krasner, you better buckle up, buttercup. You Are In For A Rough Ride !

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