As we prepare for the annual ritual of wadding up a $5 bill and throwing it into the toilet filling out our NCAA bracket -- and wait as still deliberating Bonusgate jurors wipe their tears -- we pause to read up on the gamesmanship in the petition challenges going on around the state. Here's Jim O'Toole on the aborted Onorato v. Hoeffel challenge:
Mr. Onorato's lawyers initially challenged Joe Hoeffel's petitions. Before the day was over, however, they withdrew the challenge. Behind the maneuvering was a little gamesmanship in the four-candidate Democratic race. The Onorato forces anticipated that the Hoeffel campaign
might challenge the petitions of yet another candidate -- Philadelphia's state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams. If that happened, the Onorato campaign wanted to avoid the possibility that Mr. Hoeffel would emerge as the sole surviving southeastern candidate against Mr. Onorato and his Allegheny County neighbor, Auditor General Jack Wagner.
When it became clear that Mr. Hoeffel would not challenge Mr. Williams, they then saw no need to challenge Mr. Hoeffel.
For the Inquirer, info here on State Rep. Bryan Lentz's challenge off former US Atty Pat Meehan's petitions in the 7th Congressional District in Delaware County. The Lentz clan's attorney is Pittsburgh's own Cliff Levine, a veteran of the bitter Tom Murphy v Bob O'Connor election challenge in 2001.
-- Timothy McNulty.