The House Republican Party is calling for an investigation into Philadelphia District Attorney Krasner’s handling of the Philadelphia MP’s arrest warrant.

Republican lawmakers on Tuesday asked Pennsylvania Attorney General Michelle Henry to investigate whether the Philadelphia district attorney’s office violated election law by announcing and then withdrawing an arrest warrant for a Democratic lawmaker days before last month’s primary election.

Kevin Boyle, who was seeking the nomination to run for an eighth term, faced a primary challenge from a Democratic Party-backed opponent who entered the race after concerns about Boyle’s mental health became public earlier this year.

House Republican leaders suggested Tuesday that the order was issued and made public in an attempt to influence the election.

“We know District Attorney Krasner has a history of political, inappropriate and unprofessional management of his office,” House Minority Leader Bryan Cutler (D-Lancaster) said at a news conference Tuesday. “We do not know how an arrest warrant was issued with such a significant error. We do not know what the motivation was for issuing an important statement withdrawing the order on the eve of the elections, after a week of postal votes being cast.”

Philadelphia County spokesman Larry Krasner told the Capital-Star on Tuesday that Republicans’ call for an investigation is “just another example of political theater by enemies of democracy.”

Krasner spokesman Dustin Slaughter noted that many of the Republican leaders calling for an investigation also falsely contested the 2020 election.

“Perhaps we should instead investigate actual attempts to undermine the integrity of our democratic process and continued attempts to silence voters in Philadelphia,” Slaughter said.

Boyle, who has been open about his mental health issues in the past, was stripped of his committee positions and security privileges on Capitol Hill in February after an embarrassing video of him appeared on social media. Cellphone footage shows Boyle threatening to shut down a suburban Philadelphia tavern after being asked to leave.

Philadelphia prosecutor Krasner withdraws arrest warrant for embattled state representative Kevin Boyle

The arrest warrant, which Krasner’s office said was a bench warrant issued against Boyle by his ex-wife, was first published April 16 in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

On April 22, the Monday before the election, Krasner and Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel held a press conference at which they announced that the arrest warrant had been withdrawn because there was no court order in force for Boyle to violate. They attributed the error to incomplete information on which police relied and promised to investigate the matter.

Boyle lost his April 23 re-election bid by more than 45% of the vote to Sean Dougherty, the son of state Supreme Court Justice Kevin Dougherty and nephew of former labor leader John Dougherty.

Krasner’s progressive policies on crime and ending mass incarceration made him a recurrent target of criticism from conservative politicians. The state House impeached Krasner in 2022 during the last legislative session when Republicans were in power, and the state Supreme Court is considering whether the still Republican-controlled Senate can hold a trial in the current session.

Rep. Martina White (Philadelphia), secretary of the House Republican Caucus, described the withdrawal of the injunction as “the latest botched incident” from Krasner’s office and suggested that it would leave the public wondering whether Krasner coordinated and approved the issuance of the injunction a week before the election.

“Nationwide media aroused interest in this case. “Basically, the manhunt for this legislator lasted over a week,” White said. “And then a gigantic oops. There’s nothing to see here.

Democratic leaders in the House of Representatives declined to comment Tuesday.

Boyle was previously arrested in 2021 for violating a restraining order issued by his then-wife and received mental health treatment.

His absence from the House during last month’s voting session sparked a partisan debate over whether Democrats could still cast votes on his behalf.

Democrats, who control the House by one vote, say they are powerless under the chamber’s rules to rescind a letter signed by Boyle authorizing his vote to be cast by the majority whip, a common practice among lawmakers that allows them to pursue other matters during routine votes.

House Majority Leader Matt Bradford (D-Montgomery) introduced an amendment to the House rules that would have allowed leaders to declare a lawmaker incapacitated, but the resolution was not brought to a vote.

Boyle’s whereabouts are still unclear.

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