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SD48: Tom Ryan Announces Bid for GOP Nomination

Tom Ryan, a retired York County businessman, announced that he is seeking the Republican nomination for the open seat in the state’s 48th Senatorial District. 

State Sen. Mike Folmer (R-Lebanon) resigned from office on Sept. 18 after Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced that Folmer was charged with possession of child pornography. Folmer represented the district since 2007. 

In a release sharing his intentions for the seat, Ryan pinpointed lowering taxes and reducing regulations as priorities to help grow the local economy.

“I am running on a platform of kitchen table issues,” Ryan said in the release. “The issues that affect us all … every day … where we live:  A business environment with lower taxes and reduced regulation that stimulates growth, creating jobs and better wages; the type of education and workforce development (tool boxes vs golden tickets) to win and advance in those jobs; reduced health care costs, and a reintroduction of the fiscal discipline to spend smarter on real priorities, instead of just spending more … on special interests.”

Ryan, 67, retired from his role at Motor Technology, Inc. in March and said that his career in business has provided “intensive hands-on familiarity with the business issues at the heart of economic growth.” He has also served on the Leadership Council of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). 

Ryan is one of the eleven candidates that the Pennsylvania Republican Party confirmed have submitted their names seeking their party’s nomination. According to the PAGOP, the 10 other candidates are Lebanon District Attorney Dave Arnold, Real Estate Agent Bill Bering, Lebanon Business owner Nathan Brightbill, Commonwealth Partners Founder and CEO Matt Brouillette, State Representative Russ Diamond, Millersville University Professor Charles Greenawalt, Community Activist Jack Hamlett, Insurance Professional Randy Hoffman, Steelton Highspire School District Teacher Stephen Roth, and Healthcare Manager Paul Vranesic.

According to the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, three Democrats have expressed interest in the seat thus far. Matthew Duval; a former high school teacher who currently works as an instructional designer for a service provider for adults and children with autism, David Lloyd; West Cornwall township supervisor and CEO of Ephrata Area Rehab Services, and Michael Schroeder, an associate professor at Lebanon Valley College and environmental advocate, are hoping to represent their party in the upcoming special election.

Folmer, who served as chair of the Senate’s State Government Committee, won his most recent reelection bid in 2018 by 25 points over Democrat Lois Herr. 

The 48th Senatorial District seat encompasses Lebanon and parts of Dauphin and York Counties. The special election date for the seat is Jan. 14

The Pennsylvania Republican Party will choose their nominee for the seat on Saturday, October 19 at a conferee meeting at Lebanon Valley College, while the Pennsylvania Democratic Party will convene on Oct. 20 to select their nominee.

4 Responses

  1. Lowering taxes and reducing regulations is a mantra and is without thinking. Taxes have been lowered to a level not experienced in decades. Regulations are difficult but are the result of corporate greed – if i can dump this crap into the rivers I don’t pay to have it cleaned up. But, dumping it into the river (or air) it is not a cost to ME and what me worry- I’m on my way to the bank. My grandchildren – oh they are precious and my bottom line is MORE important than they. Elect another businessman who has no concerns for posterity, his, your or my kids.

      1. I understand your cynicism and weariness. That said, I advocate reducing regulations, not eliminating them (not least because there is indeed some corporate malfeasance). But there are too many needless regulations and adversarial enforcement that cost hundred-of-thousands of man-hours and millions-of-dollars that stifle growth, job creation and wages — especially among smaller businesses (like the one I ran and based on which I can directly attest how nonsensically wasteful and counterproductive it can be). As to taxes: PA corporate taxes are still among the country’s highest; and onerous, unfair property taxes continue to grow unabated without accountability. BTW, I have 4 kids and 7 grand kids, and my concern for their future is precisely why I am running — they are my bottom line!

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