Stop me if you’ve heard this before.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will hold a special election for a vacated state House seat that will determine the party in the majority in the chamber.
Of course you have heard this before. We’ve done this six times in the last 365 days in the 21st, 32nd, 34th, 35th, 108th and 163rd Legislative Districts.
And in 14 days, we’ll do it all over again in the 140th District in Bucks County.
Democrat Jim Prokopiak, a Levittown attorney and Pennsbury School Board member, and Republican Candace Cabanas, a hospitality professional, will square off on February 13 in a special election to replace John Galloway, who resigned in December after winning a Magisterial District Judge position in Falls Township.
At stake – control of the State House as both Democrats and Republicans currently seat 101 members. So the eyes of the Pennsylvania political class are trained on Bucks County.
Here is a look at where the two candidates stand on various issues.
There are 41,159 registered voters in the 140th District with Democrats holding a 7,000-voter edge.
Prokopiak advocates for the expansion of affordable housing opportunities in Lower Bucks County. To address current disparities in municipal obligations, he proposes the inclusion of affordable housing as a mandatory provision, aligning with practices in New Jersey.
Cabanas says that Lower Bucks County’s working families need a dedicated advocate and she pledges to be that champion, relentlessly pursuing family-sustaining employment opportunities, battling against inflation, striving for lower taxes, and advocating for higher wages.
Women’s Reproductive Rights
Prokopiak firmly upholds a pro-choice stance, opposing any restrictions on a woman’s right to choose. Additionally, he endorses a constitutional amendment affirming and safeguarding a woman’s right to choose.
Cabanas believes that the people have a right to decide the issue and her job as a state representative would be to follow their wishes.
Emphasizing the pivotal role of education, Prokopiak proposes increased funding for K-12 public education, expanded Pre-K funding, and comprehensive support for both public college education and vocational training. Rejecting any compromise on public education, Prokopiak opposes voucher programs, emphasizing the need for consistent and adequate funding for public schools.
Cabanas, who favors school choice, says every student is entitled to a high-quality education that equips them for a rapidly evolving economy. She is dedicated to securing the community’s rightful share of education funding, ensuring students are well-prepared for future success.
Prokopiak affirms healthcare as a fundamental human right and proposes comprehensive initiatives to ensure accessible and affordable healthcare for all Pennsylvanians throughout their lives.
Cabanas points to her experience in home health care as proof she understands the importance of fighting for policies that would make quality healthcare accessible and affordable.
The 140th District, as constituted over the past 55 years, has been solely in Democratic hands, beginning with Milton Berks (1969-74). Galloway held the seat from 2007 to the end of last year and won re-election in 2022 running unopposed.
Pennsylvania has held 65 special legislative elections since 2010 – the second-most of any state, according to Ballotpedia.