SHOWDOWN: The People vs. Vincent Fumo

BY DAVE DAVIES/DAILY NEWS It’s official: State Sen. Vince Fumo won’t get a pass next year. Anti-casino community activist Anne Dicker has posted a Web site announcing plans to run against Fumo next April, promising a “break from the old idea of self service over public service.” Fumo is scheduled to stand trial in February on a 139-count federal corruption indictment. “It’s absolutely ridiculous Vince Fumo is still in office — he should resign,” Dicker said in a telephone interview yesterday.

“I’ll let a jury decide his guilt or innocence, but hisannedicker.jpg actions have brought a great deal of shame on this city.” If Fumo’s trial begins as scheduled on Feb. 25, voters would likely be bombarded with unflattering headlines about the senator for much of the campaign. The trial would likely be delayed if judge William Yohn grants a government motion to disqualify the firm of Fumo’s attorney, Richard Sprague. Fumo could also be helped in the unlikely event that the state legislature were to approve Gov. Rendell’s idea of moving the state’s primary election to earlier in the year.

A February primary would give Dicker less to time to campaign and could wrap up the contest before Fumo’s trial begins. Fumo is expected to raise plenty of money for the run. Dicker said she knows she’ll need more than the $17,000 she raised in her run for state legislature last year. “We know we’re running against a millionaire,” Dicker said, “and I want to run a campaign to win.”

fumo_final.jpgANNE DICKER.COM: The 2006 Election saw sweeping change in the General Assembly; tied largely to the midnight pay raise and the failure of elected officials to be accountable to the people they serve. That same spirit has now begun to catch on in Philadelphia. The vibrant reform movement has seen Philadelphians institute and embrace zoning reform to update the way development impacts neighborhoods and campaign finance reform to protect the vote from the historically corrupting influence of money. This same reform-minded citizenry overwhelmingly elected a proven reformer for mayor, in Michael Nutter. Anne believes that it is time for Philadelphia to turn its attention and energy toward Harrisburg.

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