Why Miller Backed Out of SD28, in One Map

SD28 results

State Rep. Ron Miller decided not to pursue a rematch against businessman Scott Wagner. Based on the results of the special election contest between the two of them, it’s no surprise.

Wagner’s special election win last Tuesday was historic. As a write-in candidate he defeated Miller, the GOP nominee, as well as Democrat Linda Small. It marked the first time in Pennsylvania history that a state legislative candidate waged a successful write-in campaign.

It didn’t hurt that the conservative businessman was largely able to bankroll his effort, which was opposed by Republicans dollars in Harrisburg.

Wagner will fill the remainder of former state Sen. Mike Waugh’s term and will run for a new term this year.

On Wednesday, Miller withdrew his candidacy in the May primary election.

“I don’t see the tone of the race changing a whole lot,” Miller told the York Dispatch, commenting on the bitter, personal tone of the special election. “It’s not good for York County, and I don’t want to see us go through it.”

The map above shows where each candidate won on March 18.

The lightest shade indicates a simple plurality. A solid shade indicates a candidate reached or exceeded 50% of the vote. A dark shade indicates a candidate hit or exceeded 60%. Red = Scott Wagner. Green = Ron Miller. Blue = Linda Small.

Miller earned a plurality in 9 precincts of the 111 in the district, including just 2 where he reached or exceeded 50% of the total vote.

Outside of the heavily Democratic City of York, which Small won handily, Wagner’s performance was strong district-wide. Wagner won with 48% of the vote, Miller took 26.48%, and Small received 24.52%.

Troublingly for Ron Miller he lost even his own legislative district, shown in the map below. Wagner took 45.7% of the vote there, while Miller took 32.4% and Small received 21.9%.

Wagner faces first-time candidate Zachary Hearn in the GOP primary in May. Small is unopposed for the Democratic nomination.

Wagner, the owner of Penn Waste, advertises on PoliticsPA.

SD28 results in HD93

SDCC Hires New Executive and Deputy Directors

Aronson

Joe Aronson

The Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee revealed their new Executive Director and Deputy Executive Director today.

Joe Aronson will become the Executive Director while Victor Wills will occupy the position of Deputy Director.

Aronson is coming from the Delaware Democratic Party where he has been Executive Director since 2011 and was once President of the Association of State Democratic Executive Directors (ASDED). Obviously, he brings a lot of “Executive Director” experience.

He is also a Minnesota native and St. John’s University graduate who worked on Al Franken’s 2008 Senate campaign and for the Minnesota Democratic Party.

“I’m excited to embark on a new political journey in Pennsylvania; I think the Senate’s in a unique position this cycle to make Democratic gains and I can’t wait to get started,” said Aronson.

Victor Wills, meanwhile, has served as State Senator Rob Teplitz’s (D-Harrisburg) Chief of Staff and 2012 campaign manager. He graduated from Penn State as well as PSU’s Dickinson School of Law.

“I am very much looking forward to working with the senators and candidates in this new capacity, and I am eager to hit the ground running in the 2014 Election Cycle,” said Wills.

Former Executive Director Aren Platt and Deputy Executive Director Jessica Cosme have joined Sen. Daylin Leach’s Congressional campaign for PA’s 13th district. Platt will continue working with the SDCC as a consultant.

Marseglia Eyes Senate Challenge to Tomlinson

Bucks County Commissioner Diane Marseglia

Bucks County Commissioner Diane Marseglia

The Democratic Commissioner from Bucks County, Diane Marseglia confirmed that she is looking at a run for State Senate in District 6, currently held by Tommy Tomlinson (R-Bucks).

“I am considering it,” Marseglia said, “But that’s not in any way a guarantee. [First] I’m going to get through the holiday and talk to my daughter about it.”

Marseglia, 52, was elected Bucks County Commissioner in November 2007 and re-elected in 2011. She is the lone Democrat on the 3 person board. Marseglia was raised in Lower Makefield and graduated from Pennsbury High School. By trade, she is a clinical social worker for children and families in Bucks County.

Democrats in Washington, DC have been trying to recruit her to run for U.S. Congress for several years.

Tomlinson, 68, has held the seat since 1995. He cruised to re-election by 16 points in 2010 and won by 7 points in the Democratic wave year of 2006.

He is a licensed funeral director. He owns and operates Tomlinson Funeral home in Bensalem, a family established business. He resides in Bensalem.

“Tommy Tomlinson is one of the most popular elected officials ever to serve in the Senate, and recent [internal] polling bore that out,” said Mike Long, a Harrisburg-based political consultant who advises the Senator.

“Diane Marseglia is one of the most bitterly partisan Democrat politicians I have ever seen. That said, we expect Tommy to have an opponent and Marseglia is as good as any.”

Representative Tina Davis (D-Bucks) was rumored to have been considering a run for the seat, but she ruled out a bid on Monday.

“I’m not doing it,” Davis told PoliticsPA.

Davis and Marseglia have a personal relationship. “We wouldn’t have run against each other,” Marselgia told PoliticsPA.

Local real estate agent Robin Kemmerer is another name being floated for the Democratic nomination.

Including deep blue pockets in lower Bucks County, SD-6 is the kind of seat Democrats need to contest if they are to win a majority in the State Senate. The district gives Dems a 49% to 38% voter registration edge and leans left in statewide and federal races with a Democratic Performance Index (DPI) of 56%. In a rough year for Democrats, Joe Sestak took 50% of the vote over Pat Toomey for Senate and Dan Onorato earned 47% against Tom Corbett for Governor.

The 2012 numbers are even more promising for Democrats. Obama took 54%, Senator Bob Casey took 56% and Kathleen Kane had the best showing with 57%.

It is unlikely that 2014 will have as strong of a turnout for Democrats as 2012, a presidential year. At the same time, the election will likely not be as anti-Democratic as the GOP wave of 2010.

Knox Abruptly Ends Philly Mayoral Bid

Tom Knox

Tom Knox

It was rumored that Tom Knox would officially launch his candidacy for the 2015 Philadelphia mayor’s race next week, but Friday he announced that he would not be seeking the position.

“After much soul-searching and many difficult conversations with my wife, children and trusted advisers, I am today announcing the end of my planned 2015 mayoral campaign.  I did not reach this decision easily.  I love Philadelphia. Leading this great city as mayor has been a lifelong ambition, but it’s simply not to be,” Knox said. “To all those who have worked with me, stood by me and believed in my candidacy, I offer my sincerest gratitude.”

It would have been his second run at mayor’s office; in 2007 he lost in the Democratic primary to Michael Nutter.

Knox also dropped out of the Democratic primary for Governor in 2010.

Knox is a Philadelphia businessman and served on Mayor Ed Rendell’s first cabinet in a budgetary position. A perennial candidate, he won’t be featured on the ballot in the City of Brotherly Love in 2015.

In other Philadelphia mayoral news, former City Councilman Frank Rizzo has changed his official party registration to Democrat and is eying his own candidacy. Rizzo was a Republican but became an an independent in 2011.

Rizzo’s father was a Philadelphia mayor himself, which Frank mentioned in an interview. “I was raised by a mayor, who will always be revered in Philadelphia as doing a good job,” he said. “I watched him work. I utilized some of those things saw when I was in City Council.”

City of Philadelphia Democratic Chairman and Congressman Bob Brady has already picked his candidate for 2015 mayor: State Senator Anthony Williams. Undeterred by this, Rizzo plans to formally announce his candidacy after the holidays.

City Controller Alan Butkovitz, Councilman Bill Green and several others are already jockeying for the mayoral campaign.

Shakeup at Montco GOP: Kerns Out, Vereb In

Corbett Cawley Kerns

Kerns, center, with Tom Corbett and Jim Cawley in 2010

Following a week of rumors about a sexual assault charge, Montgomery County Republican Party Chairman Bob Kerns resigned his post abruptly on Thursday.

No charges have yet been filed, but several Republican insiders said Kerns, 66, is accused of assaulting a middle aged woman employed by his law firm after a party on October 25.

“The Montgomery County Republican Committee (MCRC) today received the resignation of its chairman, Robert J. Kerns,” party executive director John Kelemen said in a press release.

“MCRC has no comment on media reports related to a possible criminal investigation of Mr. Kerns unrelated to his duties as chairman.”

The sensational news follows a busy month in Montco GOP politics. Party leaders including Gov. Tom Corbett helped broker a truce to end a long-running personal feud between two of the county’s biggest Republican fundraisers, Bob Asher and Vahan Gureghian.

Kerns and Asher had long been at odds.

As Republicans feuded over the past several years, Montgomery County Democrats made major inroads and now control local government.

State Rep. Mike Vereb also played a major role in getting both sides to the table.

He told several Republicans that he planned to seek the post of Chairman.

Republican County Commissioner Bruce Castor said he supported Vereb’s bid, and that Vereb was unopposed for the position.

“Rep. Mike Vereb and I have been speaking since yesterday afternoon. I have agreed to support him for MCRC Chairman. That agreement has cleared the field, and Mike will be the next Chairman,” Castor said.

“I’m confident Mike has the relationships to heal old wounds and get our party moving again. I thank party leaders from all spectra of the GOP for their willingness to rally around Mike Vereb.”

Biden Congratulates Allentown Mayor on Win

Biden Phone Pawlowski

Photo simulated

Vice President Joe Biden called Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski to congratulate him on his win last night and to wish him the best in his pursuit of the governorship.

Biden called Pawlowski while his team was still in the war room, gathering numbers and congratulated the mayor on his re-election. Next the VP went on speaker phone to talk to the Mayor’s campaign team and also congratulated Tom Muller for his close win for Lehigh County executive. Biden thanked their campaigns for “taking out the Tea Party in Lehigh County,” and fighting on the front lines, according to Pawlowski campaign manager Mike Fleck.

Muller overcame outspoken conservative Scott Ott.

Pawlowski won his third term with 62% of the vote; he was challenged by Independent candidate Michael Donovan.

He won his second term in 2009 by a much stronger margin, taking 74% of the votes in that race.

Pawlowski sought re-election as Allentown mayor this year after winning the Republican and Democratic nomination; however, after announcing his campaign for governor, the former vice president of Allentown City Council Donovan decided to challenge him, contending that the mayor’s attentions would not be on Allentown while he pursued the governor’s mansion.

“We’re going to tell the success story of Allentown across Pennsylvania in the governor’s campaign,” Pawlowski said. “The Allentown story is definitely a success story.”

Allentown is the fastest growing city in the state, and has a coveted Neighborhood Improvement Zone (NIZ), a tax incentive tract of land for urban renewal projects. Allentown is building a hockey arena, a hotel and other restaurant and retail space, right in their downtown with the incentives from the zone.

Pawlowski is one of eight in the Democratic field for the governor nomination, a pack that includes Allyson Schwartz, Rob McCord, John Hanger, Tom Wolf, Katie McGinty, Max Myers and Jo Ellen Litz. As far as we know, Pawlowski is the only one who got a call from VPOTUS last night.

Morning Buzz: Election Day Wrap-Up

I Voted StickerHere is your one-stop shop for all of the results of yesterday’s elections. And with Gov. Corbett’s announcement, the 2014 cycle starts today. Good morning politicos, here’s the Buzz.

Election Results

Republican Stabile Wins PA Superior Court Seat: The second time was the charm for Vic Stabile. The Cumberland County attorney won Pennsylvania’s open Superior Court seat in a 3 point victory.

Baer, Castille Easily Win Retention: As of this morning, only one Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had ever lost a bid for retention. As of this evening, that number still stands.

Upset: GOP Beats Callahan in Northampton Exec: In a huge upset, Bangor Mayor John Brown defeated Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan for Northampton County executive.

Dem Muller Wins Lehigh Exec: Democrat Tom Muller defeated Republican Scott Ott to become Lehigh County Executive, in a race that highlighted the difference between moderate and conservative ideologies at the county level.

GOP Sweeps Delco Races: Delaware County Democrats went 0 for 7 in a county President Obama won by 21 points in 2012.

Peduto Coalition Wins Big in Pittsburgh: Democrat Bill Peduto is the new Mayor of Pittsburgh by a landslide. Deb Gross won the open seat on City Council.

Papenfuse Wins Harrisburg Mayoral: After a fluid race where an incumbent lost in the primary, another Democratic primary loser ran as a Republican and there were strong write-in candidates, Eric Papenfuse won in the end.

Dems Trounce in Philly DA and Controller: Both incumbent district attorney Seth Williams and incumbent controller Alan Butkovitz get to keep their seats next term after each won solidly over their Republican challengers by more than 60 percent.

Former Rep. Platts Elected to York County Court: In the end, Platts was able to secure the win with a 58%-42% margin of victory with all of the vote counted.

Courtright Wins Scranton Race: Bill Courtright will be the next mayor of the city of Scranton.

2013 Results: Miscellaneous Races: Here are the interesting results from across the state: Erie Co. Executive, Carlisle Mayor, Butler Mayor, State College Mayor, and Dauphin Co. Court.

Non-Election News

Corbett Secures First PAC Endorsement of New Campaign: Governor Corbett has an early endorsement to boost momentum for the campaign for re-election he will be launching this week.

PA Republicans Solicit ACA Horror Stories: Forty attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act failed, but Republicans have been recently reinvigorated in the fight against the health care law after the President was caught in a misleading statement.

Toomey Joins Dems on Cloture for ENDA: Senator Toomey supported a cloture vote on Employer Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) debate Monday night, which moves the bill closer to Senate passage.

Hanger Wins Conservation Voters Poll: John Hanger picked up a victory today – albeit online. The Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania held a poll on its website asking visitors to vote on which Democratic candidate for governor they believe will best protect the environment.

Politically Uncorrected: Property tax reform is Pennsylvania’s bad penny.

Reader Poll: Which Gov Candidate will Raise the Most Money? Vote here.

Reader Poll Results: PA Superior Court race will be the closest, according to poll (you guys were wrong).

Statewide
Capitolwire: Stabile, McVay face off for Superior Court in only statewide contest
State House Sound Bites: Advocates have critique for charter school proposal
StateImpactPA: New PennFuture CEO is former deputy secretary at DCNR

Philadelphia
CapitolInq: Gay PA Rep. praises Toomey, Casey
Commonwealth Confidential: Legislature launches new, improved website
Heard in the Hall: Low Buzz Election? Lunch Goes On
PhillyClout: PhillyClout asks pols 3 questions on election day
phillydotcom: DA Seth Williams: I’m not running for mayor in 2015
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. Superior Court election shows need for change in judicial selection, Pa. group says
WHYY Newsworks: Proposal to change Pa. charter school rules runs into resistance
WHYY Newsworks: Race a key issue for organized women’s movement in Northwest Philadelphia
KYW: US Attorney General Praises Philadelphia-Based Program For Ex-Felons
NBC Philadelphia: Ramsey, Ridge Sound Off on Unknown Homeland Security Nominee

SEPA
Courier-Times: Bucks County eye doctors travel to Ghana
Courier-Times: Have coffee with the cops in Bensalem
Montgomery Media: ELECTION 2013: Familial support runs strong at local polling places
Montgomery Media: ELECTION 2013: Jeanne Sorg elected Ambler mayor
Montgomery Media: ELECTION 2013: Springfield Township sees two familiar, one new face join board of commissioners

Pittsburgh
Post-Gazette: Peduto wins Pittsburgh mayoral election in landslide
Post-Gazette: Some poll workers ask for voter identification, others don’t
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh voters want employees to live in city
Post-Gazette: Tearing down city steps draws ire in South Side Slopes
Tribune-Review: Democrat Peduto sweeps Pittsburgh in race to become next mayor
Tribune-Review: Democrats lead the way for seats on Allegheny County court
UrbanMediaToday: Pittsburgh Mayoral Race Frontrunner Bill Peduto Casts Early Ballot

Southwest
Altoona Mirror: Real estate tax rate to remain level
Altoona Mirror: Study commission could vote Dec. 2
Beaver County Times: Ambridge voters reject troubled police officer
Beaver County Times: Public opinion sought on proposal to allow shale gas on barges
Observer Reporter: Staniszewski loses Washington City Council race
Tribune Democrat: 4 Dems elected to city council
Tribune Democrat: Voters pick 4 in Northern Cambria

NEPA
Times-Tribune: Courtright wins, Mulligan concedes Scranton mayor’s race
Times-Tribune: Democrats win in sheriff, register of wills, recorder of deeds races
Times-Tribune: NEPA projects face tougher competition
Times-Tribune: Moscow borough taxes unchanged for 2014
Citizens Voice: Forty Fort voters given paper strips
Citizens Voice: Local races dominate today’s ballot
Citizens Voice: Griffith offers county council endorsements, boos incumbents
Citizens Voice: One less Democrat on W-B Twp. council ballot
News Item: It’s all up to the voters
Standard Speaker: Griffith takes shot at council majority
Standard Speaker: Mayor leaves police hiring to council
Pocono Record: Miller wins supervisors race in Chestnuthuill Township
Pocono Record: Pocono Township voters pass first class referendum
Pocono Record: Williams, O’Boyle win council seats in Mount Pocono
Pocono Record: Courtright beats Ionescu in Mount Pocono’s mayoral race

South Central
AP: Lancaster Mayor Rick Gray re-elected to third term
PennLive: Republican Bill Tully wins in Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas race
York Daily Record: Kim Bracey earns second term as York mayor
Lancaster Intelligencer: Officials: No problems at the polls
Lebanon Daily News: David Arnold downs Elizabeth Judd for another term as Lebanon County DA
Public Opinion: Jeremiah Zook is Franklin/Fulton counties’ next judge
Record Herald: Voter turnout is light so far for Election Day in Franklin County

Lehigh Valley
Pennsylvania Ave: Toomey ENDA amendment aims to reinforce religious freedoms
Morning Call: In Northampton County races, GOP is leading
Morning Call: Pat Toomey preps anti-discrimination amendment
Reading Eagle: In big win, Acosta elected Reading City Council president
WFMZ: Northampton County upset: John Brown defeats John Callahan for executive
WFMZ: Pawlowski wins 3rd term as mayor of Allentown

North by Northwest
Centre Daily Times: Voter turnout reaches 17 percent in Centre County
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Municipal election turnout ‘typical’ in Lycoming County
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Incumbents on top

Opinions
Citizens Voice: Let voter ID law fall
Post-Gazette: Open the books : Kane seeks answers on the August Wilson Center
Tribune-Review: Bank failure
PennLive: Will the new mayor get along better with Harrisburg City Council?
PennLive: Tuesday’s statewide judicial races are a reminder that Pa. has to change the way it picks judges
PennLive: It may be too late for Corbett to change the narrative, pollster Madonna says
Patriot-News: On Thursday, find out what you can do to fight gang activity: Lou Barletta and John Yudichak
Patriot-News: Food stamps cuts reveal Congressional hypocrisy: Cynthia Tucker
York Dispatch: Why we must fix Pa.’s broken pension system
Public Opinion: In (Pa. political grandstanding) we trust

Blogs
Keystone Politics: Toomey Declines to Filibuster ENDA
Keystone Politics: Don’t Pollute the Vote
Jon Greeting: New Mid-Rise Buildings Proposed for Southside Bethlehem Are Smart Growth at its Best

2013 Results: Miscellaneous Races

Timothy Scott at Carlisle CIty Hally, Photo by James Rasp

Tim Scott

PA voters handed candidates a few upset wins and losses on Tuesday outside of the top tier races. Here are the interesting results from across the state.

Dahlkemper beats out Tucci for Erie County Executive
Jake Williams, Contributing Writer

Former Rep. Kathy Dahlhkemper (D-Erie) secured her spot as Erie County Executive, winning nearly 57 percent of the vote.

Dahlkemper faced businessman and Tea Party activist, Don Tucci, whose campaign was plagued by personal troubles. Tuci secured just under 23,000 votes — 9,000 less than Dahlkemper.

Prior to running for county executive, Dahlkemper considered a bid for Pa. Governor.

This victory, and a successful term in the county executive slot could propel Dahlkemper to statewide office — or, for a return to D.C, where she was defeated by Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Butler) in 2010.

Democrat Tim Scott upsets Carlisle Mayor
Jake Williams, Contributing Writer

With all precincts reporting, Councilman Tim Scott defeated incumbent Bill Kronenberg to become Carlisle borough’s next mayor.

It took only 1,354 votes for Carlisle’s Democratic candidate for mayor to claim victory.

Borough Council vice president Tim Scott beat Republican Mayor Doc Kronenberg by just over 200 votes. Kronenberg, a Republican, was appointed mayor in January in 2012 when Kirk Wilson resigned.

Scott will be the borough’s first African-American mayor and it’s first newly-elected Mayor in 20 years.

In the election for Carlisle Borough Council, the two incumbents were returned to office but they were both outdone by Democrat Sean Schultz. Schultz led the field with 1,542 votes followed by incumbents Democrat Linda Cecconello with 1,508 votes and Republican Perry Heath with 1,385 votes.

Democratic candidate Nathan Harig and Republicans Brent Sailhamer and Henry Treffinger III all won over 1,000 votes but ultimately fell short.

Republican beats Dem incumbent for Butler City Mayor
Nick Laughlin, Contributing Writer

Republican Tom Donaldson upset Democratic incumbent Maggie Stock for Mayor of Butler City.

Butler, a city of 14,000, has not had a Republican Mayor since 1985.

Donaldson was Stock’s first opponent since 2005. He is a former cop, and his campaign centered around curbing a perceived drug problem in the city.

“Businesspeople are telling me there is more crime. You’ve got to make the neighborhoods safe. The city needs a mayor who understands the police,” Donaldson told the Tribune Live.

As of 11pm, Donaldson had 65% of the vote to Stock’s 34%.

Goreham Wins Re-Election as State College Mayor
Nick Field, Contributing Writer

State College Mayor Elizabeth Goreham won re-election tonight over Republican nominee Ron Madrid. Goreham’s margin of victory came to 62%-38% when all the votes were in, nearly identical to her total in 2009.

Madrid is a member of the Penn State faculty and a former State College Borough councilman. Goreham’s margin of victory is an indicator to what a Democrat may be able to do in the 2014 gubernatorial election.

Tully elected to Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas
Nick Field, Contributing Writer

Bill Tully defeated Anne Gingrich Cornick for a seat on the Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas. Tully had a 56%-44% lead with all the precincts in.

Republican nominee Bill Tully is the First Assistant District Attorney in Dauphin County and also served as solicitor for the county in the past. Democratic nominee Anne Gingrich Cornick is a former chief deputy public defender for the county. Dauphin County is traditionally a Republican stronghold so Tully’s solid victory is not much of a surprise.

Two Republicans and Two Democrats Win Alleghany Council Seats
Nick Laughlin, Contributing Writer

Despite a couple wins for Republicans on Tuesday, Democrats maintained their 10-5 majority on the City Council.

Republican Tom Baker defeated Democrat Daniel A. McClain Jr. and Constitution Party Candidate Jim Barr in District 1, with 50% of the vote.

In District 3, another Republican, Ed Kress narrowly beat out Democrat Mary E. Gibson by a 51-48 margin.

Democratic Council President Charles Martoni held on to his seat by beating Republican Dave Majernik in District 8 with 53% of the vote.

Finally in District 9, Democratic incumbent Bob Macey soundly defeated Kenneth Peoples with 65% of the vote.

There were three council seats that went uncontested. Two Republican incumbents, Krista Harris and Matt Drozd lost in the primaries.

GOP Sweeps Delco Races

Delaware County mapDespite an advantage in voter registration numbers, Delaware County Democrats could not loosen the GOP grip on the electorate in this Philadelphia suburb.

Voters gave Republicans a win for both seats on County Council, both seats for the Court of Common Pleas, as well as 3 other county row offices.

Mario Civera (28.2%) and David White (27.3%) will return to their respected positions on the Delaware County Council. As of 11:00 pm, the Republican ticket won 55.4% of the votes cast in the race, with 98.22% of the precincts reporting. Given that the county favored Barack Obama by 21 percentage points, it is a remarkable outcome that the local GOP has been able to hold off a surging Democratic force.

Republicans have long been strong in the county. Several traditionally Democratic groups, including numerous labor unions, backed the local GOP candidates. Republicans also enjoyed a significant fundraising advantage.

Meanwhile, the county Democrats sent an email out Monday morning that seems prescient after the election: “Dems stayed home, Gov. Corbett’s Pals re-elected to County Council”.

Efforts to link their opponents to the Governor did not help Patricia Worrell (22.2%) and Bill Clinton (22.2%); they only mustered 44.6% of the vote.

The County Council race mirrors the outcome from the County Court of Common Pleas. Together, William “Chip” Mackrides and Richard Cappelli earned a combined 55.1% of the vote.

The Democrats, Nancy Walker and Steve Chanenson, managed only to convince 44.8% of Delaware County voters to support them.

In both the Council and Court races, the lowest Republican scored at most 5 percentage points more than the highest Democrat.

The Delaware County Republican Party also won races for Sheriff, Controller and Register of Wills.

Dem Muller Wins Lehigh County Exec Race

Lehigh County Exec-elect Tom Muller

Lehigh County Exec-elect Tom Muller

Democrat Tom Muller defeated Republican Scott Ott to become Lehigh County Executive, in a race that highlighted the difference between moderate and conservative ideologies at the county level.

Muller is the Lehigh County director of administration, and Ott is an outspoken fiscal conservative who has been on county council for two years, where he’s proposed austere budget cuts.

“Government needs to live within our means and adapt to the tough economy by reducing expenses, the way the rest of Lehigh County residents and businesses must do, and have done,” Ott said.

At midnight, Muller was leading Ott by about 1,000 votes (2% of the total) with 97% of precincts reporting.

It was expected to be close, but Ott was favored.

Since Ott was endorsed by sitting county executive Matt Croslis, Lehigh County speculated that this close race had been determined.

Current executive Croslis was appointed by council and after Muller was acting executive. Muller had become acting Lehigh County executive briefly when the previous holder of the position resigned for medical reasons. The executive before that also resigned the position to be the president of an economic development nonprofit.

When the Muller campaign was hit with the blow of the Croslis endorsement, they struck back, trumpeting the support of PA Dem’s Jim Burn, Ed Rendell and Bob Casey.

Muller had previously been a Republican, but changed parties in order to run against Ott in the general election.

Three incumbent Republicans will join him on Lehigh County Board of Commissioners after winning reelection tonight, Tom Creighton and Percy Dougherty. Republican Michael Schware eked out a win over Democrat Wesley Barrett.

Allentown Mayor

Also in Lehigh County, Ed Pawlowski is projected to win Allentown mayor again, though not with the strongest showing.

With 84% of precincts reporting, he was winning with 60% of the vote. The showing may dampen enthusiasm for his pursuit of statewide office.

Pawlowski sought reelection as Allentown mayor after winning the Republican and Democratic nomination; however, after announcing his campaign for governor, the former vice president of Allentown City Council Michael Donovan decided to challenge him, contending that the mayor’s attentions would not be on Allentown while he pursued the governor’s mansion.

Donovan, though a Democrat when he was on city council, ran as an Independent.

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