Cassie Miller, Pennsylvania Capital-Star
January 2, 2024
In a brief session on Tuesday, the Pennsylvania Senate reelected state Sen. Kim Ward (R-Westmoreland) to the chamber’s commanding role.
Ward was nominated to serve a second term as Senate President Pro Tempore during session on Tuesday afternoon and was sworn in shortly after by Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Sallie Updyke Mundy.
Ward was first elected Pro Tempore during the 2022-23 legislative session and is the first woman to hold the title in the Commonwealth’s history.
The Senate President Pro Tempore presides over the upper chamber in the absence of the lieutenant governor and is the third-highest post in the Commonwealth’s government behind the governor and lieutenant governor.
In their nomination statements, both party leaders praised Ward for her ability to work across the aisle and lead the chamber.
“The President Pro-Tem is a reflection of the Senate,” Minority Leader Jay Costa (D-Allegheny) said. “There’s because the Senate is obviously composed of both Democrats and Republicans, but we serve all the citizens of this great Commonwealth. The presiding officer must be a leader of all of us and that’s Senator Ward.”
Senate Majority Leader Joe Pittman (R-Indiana) lauded Ward’s political career and accomplishments in his nomination.
“The gentlelady from the 39th district has the political acumen that is unmatched as a devotion for public service that is unrivaled,” Majority Leader Sen. Joe Pittman (R-Indiana) said.
Ward said she was optimistic about the next legislative session and the Chamber’s ability to get things done.
“As we look forward, I’m hopeful that we can together not only put Pennsylvania on a greater path to prosperity but strengthen our bonds within this chamber to put people first and especially our kids first,” Ward said. “We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity this year to change the trajectory of our children.”
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