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This story is a part of the Every Voice, Every Vote series.
Potential voters got the chance to interact with Philadelphia’s City Council candidates Tuesday night at WHYY’s headquarters on North 6th Street.
WHYY News, Committee of 70, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the League of Women Voters of Philadelphia co-hosted the City Council At-Large Candidate Convention.
More than 200 potential voters stopped by WHYY to introduce themselves to more than 20 candidates looking to be on the next Philly City Council, including incumbent Councilmember-at-Large Isaiah Thomas.
“The field is very, very competitive,” Thomas said. “It’s filled with a lot of talented and intelligent people, and I think that for the future, Philadelphia is in good hands.”
Actor Clayton Prince is also vying for an at-large seat, and said he never thought he’d be a politician.
“When I saw all of the red tape and all the political games that people play, the lives here, people in Philadelphia, at some point you have to say, ‘How can you not throw your hat in the ring?’”
Kathy Chase stopped by to get a feel for the candidates. While she already has an idea of who she’ll be voting for in the primary, she said it never hurts to learn more before making a decision.
“I think it’s better to see somebody in person than to see somebody on TV,” Chase said. “Sometimes you just get a better feel for what they’re saying.”
Samantha Sandhaus is a volunteer for PA Youth Vote, a nonpartisan group that helps people register for upcoming elections. While she isn’t old enough to vote yet, she said it’s still important for children to get engaged early.
“When we’re running for political offices in which we are educated, we are engaged and we know what we want, and that will help create a better political environment, both for future politicians and for voters in general.”
This story is a part of Every Voice, Every Vote, a collaborative project managed by The Lenfest Institute for Journalism. Lead support is provided by the William Penn Foundation with additional funding from The Lenfest Institute, Peter and Judy Leone, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Harriet and Larry Weiss, and the Wyncote Foundation, among others. Learn more about the project and view a full list of supporters here.
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