Doyle trounces Pitt professor, Green Party candidate North

By Lindsay Carroll

The Democrats watching the election results in the International Brotherhood of Electrical… The Democrats watching the election results in the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union in the South Side went crazy as CNN called Pennsylvania for Barack Obama last night. But as Rep. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania’s 14th district circulated through the crowd of local politicians and union workers, he was not watching the numbers for his own reelection. Doyle felt secure about winning his race against Pitt professor and Green Party candidate Titus North. A mile down East Carson Street in the offbeat, green seclusion of The Beehive Coffeehouse, North sat with a group of supporters and a radio to get updates on the election results. North ended the night with 8.6 percent of the district’s vote ‘- about 21,000 votes, compared to Doyle’s 227,000. North was not expecting to win the election. He’d run for the same congressional seat two years before and for mayor in 2005. He said one of his objectives was to make room for other parties on the ballot. ‘We have the forum of democracy, but we don’t have the substance,’ he said. ‘If I don’t do this now, then the person who comes after me is going to have a hard time. To a certain extent, I’m trailblazing here.’ North took an active stance against Doyle about the corporate bailout, which Doyle supported. Although he got some press coverage for it, he said that wasn’t enough. ‘Not having the money means that the press writes me off from the beginning,’ said North. Back on Hot Metal Street, Doyle said that he didn’t think North’s position at Pitt would affect how students voted. ‘I think people vote on issues,’ he said. ‘I think his support will come from people who agree with the Green Party’s platform.’ Doyle said that he wasn’t worried about losing the election because North only got 10 percent of the vote in 2006. ‘I like him personally, and I have respect for him,’ said Doyle. ‘I’ve engaged in debates with him. My way of campaigning doesn’t change depending on who I’m running against.’ Nicole Kubiczki, a Duquesne student who gathered petitions for Doyle’s campaign, said that she was impressed by Doyle. ‘He really debunked my views about politicians ‘mdash; I was expecting him to be staunch,’ she said. ‘There are a lot of Democrats that have been unopposed for so long because they’ve done such a good job. They’ve put a face on politics, rather than just being a flyer.’ Kubiczki said she didn’t know North was on the ballot. Pitt professor Patrick Altdorfer, North’s colleague in the political science department, said that even though the Green Party wouldn’t win, he thought North could have made a good representative. ‘[North] is engaged in the issues,’ said Altdorfer. ‘The Green Party doesn’t have a chance in a two-party system, so it was kind of hopeless.’