A blog of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section

Special from Crisci Associates PA Capitol Digest


More Incumbents Retired By Voters, Tea Party Loses Challenges
Voters took matters into their own hands to make changes in Harrisburg as five incumbent House members lose in today’s Primary and incumbent Democratic Congressman Tim Holden was defeated at the polls.
           The House members retired included Rep. Rick Geist (R-Blair), Majority Chair of the House Transportation Committee, Rep. Joseph Preston (D-Allegheny), Minority Chair of the House Consumer Affairs Committee, Rep. Kevin Murphy (D-Lackawanna), Rep. Ken Smith (R-Lackawanna) and Rep. Babette Josephs (D-Philadelphia).
            House Speaker Sam Smith (R-Jefferson) survived an early scare by a determined challenger and a Tea Party activist.
            Tea Party candidates also lost in their bid to unseat Republican veterans Sen. Pat Vance (R-Cumberland), Rep. Ron Miller (R-York) and Rep. Stan Saylor (R-York).
            Overall, House Republicans lost one seat as a result of the six special elections for House seats with Democrat Ed Neilson winning the seat in Philadelphia County to replace Rep. Dennis O’Brien (R-Philadelphia).
            D. Raja has beaten Rep. Mark Mustio, the Republican endorsed candidate, in the race to replace Sen. John Pippy after Mustio ran a commercial against Raja that many interpreted to be racist.  Mustio was also running for his House seat at the same time.
            In the hard-fought race for the Democratic nomination for Attorney General, Kathleen Kane has a comfortable lead over Patrick Murphy.
            In the 5-way race for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate, former coal mine owner Tom Smith has a significant lead over his four other opponents.  The endorsed candidate– Steven Welch– is in third place.
            And in the Presidential Primary, no surprise, Mitt Romney won the Republican nomination, with Rick Santorum, who dropped out of the race, coming in second, Ron Paul third and Newt Gingrich fourth.

With more than 88 percent of the votes counted–

U.S. Senator:
Former coal mine owner Tom Smith is leading with the endorsed Republican candidate Steven Welsh  running in third place with former Rep. Sam Rohrer in second place.

Congressional Races:

District 4– Scott Perry has won a 7-way race for the Republican nomination; 

District 11– activist Gene Stilp has beat Bill Vinsko for the Democratic nomination;

District 12– in the battle of the incumbents, Mark Critz beat fellow-incumbent Jason Altmire for the Democratic nomination;
District 14– incumbent Mike Doyle is an easy winner over challenger Janis Brooks for the Democratic nomination;
*District 17– challenger Matt Cartwright has beaten incumbent Tim Holden;
District 18– incumbent Tim Murphy has won over Evan Feinberg.
Interesting Races In the House:

*District 24– incumbent Joseph Preston lost to challenger Ed Gainey;

District 39– incumbent Rick Saccone has a signifiant lead over challenger Shauna D’Alessandro;
District 66– incumbent and Speaker Sam Smith has a growing lead over Chris Dush with a third Tea Party candidate a distant third;
*District 79– incumbent Rick Geist was defeated by challenger John McGinnis;
District 93– incumbent Ron Miller beat Tea Party challenger Ernie Merisotis;
District 94– incumbent Stan Saylor beat Tea Party challenger Kelly Hensaw;
*District 112– incumbent Ken Smith lost to challenger Keven Haggerty;
*District 113– incumbent Kevin Murphy lost to challenger Marty Flynn;
*District 182– incumbent Babette Josephs lost to challenger Brian Sims;

Special House Elections:
District 22– Democrat Martin Schmotzer won the seat vacated by Rep. Chelsa Wagner (D-Allegheny), 
District 134– Republican Ryan MacKenzie won the seat in Lehigh/Berks counties to replace Rep. Doug Reichley (R-Berks)
District 153–  Democrat Madeleine Dean defeated Nicholas Mattiacci in Montgomery County and to replace Rep. Josh Shapiro (D-Montgomery)
District 169–  Democrat Ed Neilson won the seat in Philadelphia County to replace Rep. Dennis O’Brien (R-Philadelphia)
District 186– Democrat Harold James won the seat vacated by Rep. Kenyatta Johnson (D-Philadelphia);
District 197– Democrat Gary Williams won a 3-way race to replace Rep. Jewell Robinson (D-Philadelphia).

Interesting Races In the Senate: 
District 15– John McNally beaten two other challengers to win the Republican nomination;
District 29– incumbent David Argall had no trouble with challenger Brian Rich;
District 31– incumbent Pat Vance beat Tea Party challenger Andrew Shaw;
District 37– D. Raja beat the endorsed Republican candidate Rep. Mark Mustio who is actually running third in this 3-way race;

Attorney General: 

Kathleen Kane has a significant lead over Patrick Murphy for the Democratic nomination

Auditor General: 
Rep. John Maher had no trouble winning the Republican nomination over his opponent Frank Pinto

Presidential Primary:
No surprise– Mitt Romney is winning the Republican Primary, but Rick Santorum, who is still on the ballot but not running, is coming in second with Ron Paul third and Newt Gingrich fourth.

            You can get the latest election results at the official Department of State Election Results webpage.


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