Edward Rendell's commanding lead going into today's election has allowed him a small luxury -- time to campaign for someone else. Yesterday, he spent nearly two hours plugging Senator Harris Wofford during a noontime rally at John F. Kennedy Plaza in Center City. The rally, which included speeches by Rendell as well as by Democratic National Committee Chairperson Ron Brown and Mayor Wilson Goode, drew a combination of 450 supporters and lunchtime observers. And Rendell campaign manager David Cohen said that although a year on the trail has tired Rendell, he still is very good at pumping up a crowd. "It [the rally] is nice to do," Cohen said. "It's [Rendell's] job to get people pumped up for Harris Wofford and he's good at it." Rendell led the political all-stars on the podium in cheers of "Harris, Harris," and his energetic remarks drew the largest cheers of the rally. "Today, this town is Harris Wofford's town," Rendell said. In a twist of his usual campaign practices, he arrived on time for the rally, although Wofford arrived a half-hour late. And Rendell stayed after Wofford left, taking his time speaking to reporters and shaking hands with well-wishers. "[A Wofford victory] would send shock waves all across the country, up to Kennebunkport and down to Washington, D.C.," Rendell said. "Wofford supports things which are important to families . . . and he's a Democratic Senator who cares about Philadelphia." Speakers at the rally encouraged straight-ticket Democratic voting -- a key for Wofford to win today's election, experts said last week. But Congressional candidate Chaka Fattah, who was not endorsed by the Democratic Party, appeared at the rally with several of his supporters touting "Fattah for Congress" signs. Wofford spoke for over 20 minutes, continuing to focus on establishing a national health care system and extending unemployment benefits. And he accused Washington of turning its back on the middle class. "If we can move heaven and earth to help an emir who's lost his country, why in God's name can't we lift a finger for an unemployed worker who needs unemployment benefits?" he asked. He joined Rendell, Goode and Brown in urging people to vote today and urging people to get their friends and neighbors to vote. "Tomorrow, for one day, your vote will be more powerful than all those special interests," Wofford said. During the rally, Wofford and Rendell workers circulated blue-and-white placards reading "Senator Wofford, Mayor Rendell" as well as hand-made signs with slogans such as "Women for Wofford" and "Hurrah for Harris." Thornburgh supporters also appeared in the crowd, carrying signs saying "No show Wofford for Civil Rights" and "Why no on Thomas -- Wofford?" Wofford campaign worker Amy Chapman said she was pleased with the turnout at the rally, saying, "Wofford has momentum on his side."Comments powered by Disqus
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