Greater Harrisburg's Community Magazine

Raffle Tickets, Flyers Dent Harrisburg’s Mayoral Election

Campaign signs line the State Street median in Harrisburg.

A Dauphin County judge issued an injunction today to stop the distribution of raffle tickets that appeared to encourage people to vote a certain way in the race for Harrisburg mayor.

People at many city polling stations were found to be handing out raffle tickets, which promised prizes including a new iPhone X (first prize), $500 in cash (second prize) and a $200 Best Buy gift card (third prize).

Winners, the ticket said, would be announced on a Facebook page called Harrisburg Mayoral Election 2017.

“The Court finds that the raffle ticket is also promoting of a particular race and suggestive of balloting,” according to the court order.

Judge Arthur Evans ordered that all raffle tickets be seized from precincts 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 13 and 14. He further ordered that all Dauphin County sheriffs visit all polling stations and seize all raffle tickets.

To promote the raffle, fliers were also handed out saying, “NO Papenfuse. Vote Write-in. Gloria Martin-Roberts. Stand for Equality.”

Just a few days ago, Martin-Roberts announced on Facebook that she would mount a late write-in campaign for mayor. She lost in the Democratic primary in May to incumbent Mayor Eric Papenfuse. Papenfuse also gained more write-in votes than Martin-Roberts from Republican voters, so also appears on the Republican ballot for mayor.

Polls close at 8 p.m.

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