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  Onorato allies aid Tea Party candidacy
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Last EditedScott³  Aug 10, 2010 12:49pm
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AuthorMike Wereschagin
MediaNewspaper - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
News DateTuesday, August 10, 2010 06:00:00 PM UTC0:0
Description"Members of unions that endorsed Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato, as well as one of his campaign workers, helped get Tea Party candidate John Krupa onto Pennsylvania's gubernatorial ballot for November's election, state records show.

Krupa, 59, of Clinton County filed petitions Aug. 2 with more than 24,000 signatures to get his name on the ballot. Among those who gathered signatures are officers of building trades unions, whose statewide organization unanimously endorsed Onorato on June 9 — including several officers from a Pittsburgh union hall where Onorato announced his candidacy and celebrated his primary victory.

Another Krupa petition circulator, Heather Damron of Lehigh County, was paid $1,000 by Onorato's campaign for his petition drive four months earlier.

Other Tea Party members, including Diana Reimer of Philadelphia, filed a challenge to Krupa's petitions Monday in an effort to knock him off the ballot.

A candidate with the conservative Tea Party could siphon votes from Onorato's Republican rival, Attorney General Tom Corbett of Shaler. Campaign workers for two Democratic U.S. House candidates in Eastern Pennsylvania, both of whom face difficult Republican challenges, reportedly circulated petitions for conservative third-party candidates.

"It may not be a conspiracy, but it is a pattern," said G. Terry Madonna, political science professor at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster."
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