2014 election produces few surprises locally
● By J. Chambless
By Steven Hoffman
With the exception of Gov. Tom Corbett, Election Day was a good day to be an incumbent in Pennsylvania. While Corbett lost to Democratic challenger Tom Wolf, incumbents overwhelmingly were reelected as Republicans expanded their control in the state・s General Assembly.
Incumbent State Rep. Chris Ross was elected to a tenth term in the 158th District despite having little more than a month to campaign for the Nov. 4 election. Ross received 11,276 votes (58 percent) to 8,068 votes (42 percent) for Democratic challenger Susan Rzucidlo.
Ross stepped in to save the seat for the Republican Party after nominee Cuyler Walker withdrew from the race on Sept. 22, citing personal reasons. The withdrawal came well after the deadline, but Chester County Republicans successfully recruited Ross, who planned to retire at the end of the current term, to run for the seat. Democrats challenged the legality of the switch so late in the election season, but when the courts upheld Ross・s position on the ballot he was able to quickly jump start a campaign. The 2014 results mirrored those of 2012, when Ross also received 58 percent of the vote.
In the 13th Legislative District, incumbent Republican John Lawrence earned his third term in the State House. He picked up 9,739 votes (63 percent) to 5,804 votes (37 percent) for Democratic challenger Ann Schott.
In the 16th District Congressional race, U.S. Rep. Joseph Pitts won a tenth term by defeating former State Rep. Tom Houghton by a margin of 58 percent to 42 percent. Pitts relied on the conservative base in Lancaster County for the win. He picked up 81,992 votes (62 percent) to Houghton・s 51,185 (38 percent) in Lancaster County. In Chester County, Pitts out-polled Houghton by just six votes・Pitts received 12,337 votes to 12,331 for Houghton. Houghton earned 10,098 votes in Berks County, out-polling Pitts, who earned 6,368 votes there.
Ryan Costello, a rising star in the Republican Party, is heading to Congress after the current Chester County Commission handily defeated Democrat Manan Trivedi to fill the open seat in the 6th Congressional District.
Costello earned 118,450 votes (56 percent) to 92,193 (44 percent) for Trivedi across the sprawling 6th Congressional District that includes portions of four counties. Costello scored well across the district, picking up 55 percent of the vote in Chester County, 56 percent of the vote in Berks County, 69 percent of the vote in Lebanon County, and 55 percent of the vote in Montgomery County.
Overall, 156,352 people voted in Chester County on Election Day. That・s 47 percent of the 335,581 registered voters in the county. All vote totals are unofficial until the results are certified.
To contact Staff Writer Steven Hoffman, email firstname.lastname@example.org.