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PA House Preview: North Central

PA State House map

We continue our series on the candidates for the Pennsylvania State House with a look at the North Central Region of the Keystone State.

Races to Watch

HD 82: Justin Behrens (R) vs. Paul Takac (D)

Behrens, an Army veteran and a social worker, favors an educational voucher system and unleashing the state’s large, diverse energy portfolio. He previously served as chair of the Luzerne County GOP before moving to State College last year.

Takac, a member of the College Township Council, strongly supports the right of every woman to make her own healthcare decisions, without government interference or restriction. He also wants to close the background check loophole, register weapons sold in online and private sales, and restrict Permitless Carry and Reciprocation Laws.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: D+9.1


HD 107: Ronald Tanney (D) vs. Joanne Stehr (R)

This is a rematch of their primary election that Stehr won 53.4% to 46.6%. Tanney received enough votes as a write-in on the Democratic side to earn the party nomination in the fall.

Read our story on how the rematch came to be.


Other Contested Races

HD 76: Stephanie Borowicz* (R) vs. Denise Maris (D)

Borowicz is looking for her third term in Harrisburg. She is committed to protecting rights and freedoms from intrusive government overreach, which includes safeguarding Second Amendment liberties and protecting the sanctity of all human life.

Maris, a human resources director, easily defeated Elijah Probst in the primary. She is pro-choice and wants to protect reproductive rights.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: R+26.0


HD 77: Scott Conklin* (D) vs. Steve Yetsko (R)

Conklin, the Democratic chair of the House State Government Committee, is seeking his ninth term in Harrisburg. He defeated Yetsko with 66 percent of the vote in 2020. Conklin says he will continue fighting for increased education funding, safer infrastructure, voter accessibility and environmental sustainability for Pennsylvania.

Yetsko, a HVAC technician, wants to focus on the local economy and beating inflation, as well as supporting election integrity.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: D+17.0


HD 109: Edward Giannattasio (D) vs. Robert Leadbeter (R) vs. Thomas Anderson (L)

Giannattasio, a businessman, supports the John Lewis Voter Rights Act. He also believes reasonable precautions that keep firearms out of the hands of unsafe users and those with high risk behaviors should be considered so long as they do not prohibit reasonable citizens from exercising their second amendment rights.

Leadbeter, national sales director for draught beer sales for Anheuser Busch In Bev,  defeated three other contenders for the GOP nomination in the primary. He wants to preserve the 2nd Amndement right to keep and bear arms, while supporting concealed carry. Leadbeter is also pro-life.

Anderson, an information technology professional, believes abortions should be typically legal until such time as the child can be viably delivered and survive, or when the mother’s life hangs in the balance. He also believes that the overturning of Roe v. Wade was appropriate, returning power to the states.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: R+24.0


HD 116: Yesenia Rodriguez (D) vs. Dane Watro (R)

Rodriguez, a small business owner, says that we need to fully and fairly, fund our public schools and that education is the key to creating new paths for the future. Rodriguez also supports an independent commission to draw fair district lines that provide for democratic process.

Watro, an Army veteran and former mayor of McAdoo, turned back five other contenders for the GOP nomination in the primary. He wants to protect the sanctity of human life and 2nd Amendment rights, while ensuring parental engagement in children’s education.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: R+18.1


HD 123: Tim Twardzik* (R) vs. Kathy Laughlin Benyak (D)

Twardzik is running for a second term in the state house. He plans to resume advancing issues that specifically impact the families of his legislative district. Twardzik was one of 14 GOP lawmakers in a lawsuit against Act 77.

Benyak, supports fair funding for school districts to improve educational offerings and increase success rates. She also is dedicated to protecting the rights of women, to seek medical care as deemed necessary for their well-being.

Dave’s Redistricting Partisan Lean: R+21.2


Running Unopposed

  • HD 68: Clint Owlett* (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter)
  • HD 83: Jamie Flick (R-Lycoming)
  • HD 84: Joe Hamm* (R-Lycoming/Union)
  • HD 108: Lynda Culver* (R-Northumberland/Snyder)
  • HD 110: Tina Pickett* (R-Bradford/Sullivan/Susquehanna)




  • Do you agree that ByteDance should be forced to divest TikTok?

    • Yes. It's a national security risk. (60%)
    • No. It's an app used by millions and poses no threat. (40%)
    • What's ByteDance? (0%)

    Total Voters: 30

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