PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Congressman Chaka Fattah is looking for a 12th term in office, but he is facing intense competition. And, many voters are aware that he is scheduled to stand trial in mid-May on racketeering and conspiracy charges.
The 59-year old congressman has never faced a primary challenger in the Second Congressional District since he was first elected in 1994. Now, he faces three opponents, but Fattah says all bring something to the table.READ MORE: CBS3 Mysteries: Philadelphia Police Looking For Answers In Markeya Green's Murder That 'Absolutely Shocks The Conscience'
“I think all of them are capable and competent,” Fattah said.
On his pending trial, Fattah maintains his innocence, and says “none of us can have anything taken from us without due process of the law.”
“Well, you know, the Constitution was written in Philadelphia,” he said. “I think it’s great that Philadelphians are going to get a chance to demonstrate that they believe in it.”
In Fattah’s last reelection in 2014, he got 88% of the vote.
Among his competitors, longtime state Representative Dwight Evans is well-known in Philadelphia neighborhoods; he’s served in the state House since 1980.
“Let me put it this way. I think my skill set is different from any of these other people running,” Evans said. “I think I’ve demonstrated that.”READ MORE: Edwin Allen Charged With Sexually Assaulting Woman In Upper Darby SEPTA Train Terminal
The 61-year old Evans, like Fattah, previously ran for mayor.
The Philadelphia Democratic City Committee, the Philadelphia Tribune, and some unions, including the Service Employees International Union back Fattah.
The Philadelphia Daily News endorsed Evans, as have the unions representing police and firefighters. Evans’ endorsements from fellow politicians include Governor Tom Wolf, Mayor Jim Kenney, former Mayor Michael Nutter and former Governor Ed Rendell.
The Philadelphia Inquirer backs activist, lawyer and ward leader Dan Muroff, who believes that his campaign has resonated with voters.
“Look, I’m not the establishment candidate,” Muroff said. “The same issues that matter to me matter to people in this district.”
Muroff is a former president of the board of CeaseFire PA, Pennsylvania’s statewide gun violence prevention organization.MORE NEWS: North Philadelphia Rat Infestation 'Subsiding And Leaving Slowly' After City Officials Lay Down Poison In Empty Lot
Lower Merion Township commissioner Brian Gordon’s campaign touts his record in drafting ordinances on civil rights.