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Local News

Three candidates for U.S. Senate in Pa. to have petition challenges heard next week


John Cole, Pennsylvania Capital-Star
March 1, 2024

With the Pennsylvania primary election less than two months away, voters in the Keystone State should know by the end of next week which U.S. Senate candidates will appear on the ballot. 

Democrat Will Parker and Republicans Brandi Tomasetti and Joseph Vodvarka are each facing challenges to appear on the primary ballot. 

A hearing on Parker’s case is scheduled for March 4. The outcome of Parker’s case will determine whether or not U.S. Sen Bob Casey (D-Pa.) will be the only Democrat on the primary ballot.

Vodvarka’s case will be heard on March 5, while Tomasetti’s case will be heard on March 8. Walter S. Zimolong III and James J. Fitzpatrick are both listed as the attorneys on the objections to Tomasetti’s and Vodvarka’s nomination petitions.

If both of those objections are granted, David McCormick would be the only Republican candidate for U.S. Senate on Pennsylvania’s primary ballot. 

U.S. House

Four candidates for the U.S. House have faced challenges to their petitions, and one candidate has been removed from the primary ballot. 

Republican Tim Kramer was removed from the ballot for the 16th Congressional District following a challenge to his nomination petitions. U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Butler) will now likely face Democrat Preston Nouri for the seat in northwest Pennsylvania in November.

Dasha Pruett, one of two Republicans to file for the 5th Congressional District, was scheduled to have her petitions challenged this week. According to the Department of State website, that case appears unresolved. U.S. Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-Delaware) is the incumbent.

A hearing for Laurie MacDonald, one of three Democratic candidates to file for the 12th Congressional District, is scheduled for March 4.

The ruling on MacDonald’s ballots will determine whether U.S. Rep. Summer Lee will face one or two primary challengers next month. Edgewood Councilmember Bhavini Patel is also seeking the Democratic nomination.

John Broadhurst, one of six Democrats seeking to challenge U.S. Rep. Scott Perry (R-York) in the 10th Congressional District, has a hearing scheduled for March 5.

Broadhurst criticized fellow Democrat Mike O’Brien at a candidate forum on Wednesday for backing a challenge to his nomination petitions.

General Assembly

As of Friday afternoon, 13 candidates who had their petitions challenged will not appear on the primary ballot. Six of the candidates withdrew from their respective races; the other candidates saw the objections to their petitions granted. 

One of the candidates who will not appear on the ballot is former Duquesne Mayor Nickole Nesby. She was removed from the ballot following a challenge to her petitions. That leaves two Democrats in the primary race to succeed retiring state Sen. Jim Brewster (D-Allegheny) in the 45th state Senate District. Republican Kami Stulginskas, who had her petitions challenged, is scheduled to have her case heard on March 4

Two candidates seeking to replace retiring state Rep. Mark Rozzi (D-Berks) for the 126th state House District were also disqualified from the primary ballot. James D. Oswald, the only Republican to file for the seat, and Democrat Joshua M. Caltagirone were removed from the ballot following challenges. Democrat Winston J. Dilone Martinez also faces a challenge. If successful that would leave Jacklyn Rusnock, Rozzi’s ex-spouse as the only candidate. Rozzi has endorsed Rusnock for the seat.

Pennsylvania Capital-Star is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Pennsylvania Capital-Star maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Kim Lyons for questions: info@penncapital-star.com. Follow Pennsylvania Capital-Star on Facebook and Twitter.

This article is republished from Pennsylvania Capital-Star under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.