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Montco Commish Richards Considers PA-6 Bid

Commissioner Richards
Commissioner Richards

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee confirmed that it is talking to Montgomery County Commissioner Leslie Richards about a run for PA-6.

“We have spoken with Leslie along with several other people in the district, including Michael Parrish,” DCCC Spokesman Marc Brumer told PoliticsPA. The DCCC has not yet decided which candidate they will be supporting and are in the early stages of talking to several individuals in the district.

Parrish, the declared candidate in the race, a veteran and engineer from Malvern, is the only declared candidate in the race so far. He started raising money for the campaign even before Gerlach announced his retirement.

“This has all come about in the last couple days,” Richards said. “I do love my current job but I am seriously considering it.”

Richards confirmed that Emily’s List has also approached her. Emily’s List is a campaign organization that promotes pro-choice candidates.

“This race is an exciting opportunity to build on the momentum for more women’s leadership across the state,” Emily’s List spokesperson Marcy Stech said. “We are talking to a number of qualified Democratic women who could represent the families of the Sixth District.”

Richards is the vice chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners, chair of the Montgomery County Board of Elections, secretary of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission and a member of the SEPTA Board.

She lives in the 13th district*, a few miles outside the seat where she would run. The law allows any Pa. resident to run for any congressional seat, regardless of their residency.

Working to her advantage in the 6th district is that  23.3% of registered voters in PA-6 live in Montgomery County, so many voters have seen her name on a ballot before.

Other Democrats considering a bid for the seat are physician and former candidate Manan Trivedi, who lives in the 7th District, State Senator Judy Schwank, New Democratic Coalition spokesman Phil LaRue and Downingtown Mayor Josh Maxwell.

According to Cook Political Report, the district is R+2 which definitely makes it competitive as an open seat.

Republicans potentially vying for the seat are State Senator John Rafferty, former Senate candidate Sam Rohrer (who lives just outside the district), as well as Chester County Commissioner Ryan Costello or Chester County Republican Chairman Val DiGiorgio.

*The original version of this story said that Richards resides in PA-7.

17 Responses

  1. How can there be about 13 Democratic candidates running or considering running in the Pa 6 and 13 and no one in the 7th. Don’t any of these loyal Dems know that D s have increased their numbers in Delaware County so that we have a. Small margin over the R? Or do they all think that they are inevitable winners in those other districts. Where are the County chairs? Can’t they twist arms?

  2. All:
    Brittany is just getting started as editor of this website. She is allowed to make mistakes, like we all do. If you spot a mistake, simply click ‘contact’ at the bottom of the page, and let her know. She seems good about fixing mistakes quickly. Let’s all cut her some slack.

  3. @Delco: Totally agree on the editing. I’ve caught a few errors on here myself since Jan. 1. If you’re going to revise the article after posting it, you need to issue a correction notice at the bottom of the article at the very least.

  4. A lot of good points, but let’s not forget that for congress you don’t have to live in the district to run only the state. However it would certainly be a campaign issue

  5. The reporting and editing on this site is really getting sloppy. Yesterday this article said she lived in PA7 now it says PA13…a disturbing trend here.
    In any event, the numbers I tried to post her are jumbled because of the small comment spot. here is a link to the place from where I copied Presidential Vote by CD for 2012 and 2008.

  6. DD–I was not looking at pure registration numbers—was looking at and referring to vote for President by CD, and the #s are slightly better in PA7 than PA6:
    48.1 50.6 53.0 46.0

    OBAMA ROMNEY OBAMA MCCAIN 48.5 50.4 51.2 47.8


  7. Greetings, David Diano:

    Home change or not, Manan Trivedi currently lives in PA-07.

    Leslie Richards currently lives in PA-13.

    Like you, I strongly dislike the redistricting process, and favor changes to redistricting. Until that happens, we have to deal with the process that is state law.

    Under that state law, Trivedi lives in PA-07; and Richards lives in PA-13.

    All my best,
    Mike Panza

  8. Panza-
    Trivedi is in the same house he lived in when he ran for the 6th in 2010. The Republicans redistricted/gerrymandered him into the 7th, just so they could claim he doesn’t live in the 6th (because they moved the 6th).

    Delco Observer- You are usually on the ball, but this time you dropped it. “Numbers in PA7 are slightly better for Dems than PA6” ???? Not even close to true.
    Cong_District Dems vs Reps
    6th 163K vs 185K (65K other)
    7th 155K vs 223K (58K other)

    The 7th is unwinnable, unless Meehan starts tweeting pictures of his manhood to all the voters, and then puts the photos in his campaign literature.

  9. Manan Trivedi ALSO lives in PA-07. I don’t know why reporters can’t be bothered to mention this.

  10. For crying out loud can we get back to the days when politicians finished their FIRST term in a job before thinking about bailing and running for something else?

  11. First, Parrish is not a Democrat in any way – he is an oil-patch Koch Brothers operative, who smells a lot like John Lawless.

    But they could not find a worse cadidate than Richards – inarticulate, not very bright, and no real platform. Ever been to a Montco Commish meeting? Shapiro runs the whole show, Castor fusses and plays with his phone, and Richards nods and smiles like an amiable sidekick.

    Want to run a woman? Fine. Just find one that has a little substance.

  12. Rafferty voted for the huge tax hike 28 cents per gallon. Question is – did Costello or Richards lobby for it to pass? Could be an issue. Costello’s colleague Terrance Farrell was pushing hard for the tax hike.

  13. The incumbent in PA-7 may be an “empty suit” but he has enough money to fill said suit

  14. Since Richards lives in PA7, she should run there. Numbers in PA7 are slightly better for Dems than PA6, she will not have the carpetbagger label attached to her, PA7 has no candidates, and while not an open seat, the PA7 incumbent is an empty suit!

  15. The race keeps getting more interesting as names get added.

    Michael D. Parrish was registered Republican as late as Dec 16th statewide snapshot of voter registration data.

    This last-minute conversion and influx of contributions is eerily similar to what happened in the 15th congressional district last cycle. There, a Republican switched to Dem, and raised a lot of money (possibly from Republican sources), and the DCCC hiked up its skirt like a cheerleader under the bleachers. That DINO was defeated in the primary by the underfunded Lehigh Dem chairman Rich Daugherty, despite NO support from the party or DCCC.

    In the general election, Rick again got no support, but managed to get about the same vote percentage as Trivedi. Trivedi raised about $1.2 million and Daugherty raised about $45,000.

    I don’t know Parrish and why he’s been a Republican all these years, and is now suddenly switching to run as a Democrat. These are questions that Dem primary voters will need answered.

  16. I hope the Democrats keeps up the hard work building that list of powerhouse candidates: 3 carpetbaggers and someone still on ARD

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