Incumbent Cindy Bass (left) is looking to retain her position as 8th District Councilperson, as Democratic challenger Tonya Bah looks to remain on the ballot.

by Pete Mazzaccaro

Challenges to the ballot filings of the two candidates who sought to challenge 8th District Councilperson Cindy Bass in the May Democratic Primary have led to one candidate withdrawing from the race and the other fighting for her right to stay on.

Patrick Jones, a former staffer with Cindy Bass’ office, officially withdrew from the race on March 19, shortly after the Local went to press with the story that he had filed papers to get on the ballot. A petition was filed that challenged the validity of 738 of his 1,261 signatures.

In a video posted to his campaign’s Facebook page, Jones thanked supporters and hinted that he would run in the future.

“I knew the challenges that running for an elected office in the city of Philadelphia would bring, but I also believe that our greatest joys are on the other side of our greatest fights,” he said. “This will not be the last time we do this together.”

Tonya Bah’s trouble was a claim that she failed to file a statement of financial interest with the city’s department of records.

“Yes, we are appealing the decision made by the local court.” Bah said in a statement. “We are moving forward to appeal the decision made by the local Philadelphia court of common pleas. This is not the first time candidates for this seat have had to fight through the courts to be on the ballot. There is precedent for rulings on hyper-technicalities being overturned by higher courts, and we intend to be on the ballot this May.”

Bass has no Republican challenger for this fall’s general election, so if Bah’s appeal fails, Bass would automatically retain her seat.

Pete Mazzaccaro can be reached at 215-248-8802 or