Pennsylvania 5/15 Primary: At a Glance


Pennsylvania has its statewide primary election on Tuesday, May 15. Here are some election facts and a few key races, with the names of the Democratic candidates and links to their campaign websites.

Pennsylvania has a closed primary. Check here for Pennsylvania’s Voter ID requirements.

The State At A Glance
– 1 Senator is up for re-election in 2018
– All 18 House Representatives are up for re-election
>>> Note: Here’s the new district map being used for the Nov. elections.
– Pennsylvania went for Trump by less than 1 point in 2016
– Partisan breakdown of the state legislature:
Governor (D)
State Senate 34 (R) – 16 (D)
State House 120 (R) – 81 (D)  two seats are currently vacant

Key Races

The incumbent, Governor Tom Wolf (D), is running for re-election. Whichever candidate wins the governor’s race in 2018 will be involved with the 2020 redistricting that happens after the census is taken. Pennsylvania is a key swing-state and it is critical that Democrats hold this seat.

Tom Wolf – campaign website

The Pennsylvania Senate seat is considered to either a Lean or Likely Democrat. Senator Bob Casey Jr. (D) is the incumbent. In order for the Democrats to have even a chance at flipping the Senate, we must hang on to this seat.

Bob Casey Jr. – campaign website

The brand new congressional district map has completely scrambled what we should expect from the 2018 elections. Pennsylvania’s gerrymandered map greatly favored Republicans, but this new map creates many more competitive districts for Democrats. Well over half of the PA districts are ones that show up on various organization’s target lists. So, head to this full list of House districts and candidates and start learning about the Democratic candidates for your newly drawn district.

Half of the State Senate seats are up for re-election. The Democrats need to pick up 1 seat in the Senate to break the Republicans ability to override gubernatorial vetoes. Also, every candidate who is elected in 2018 will serve until 2022 which means they will participate in the redistricting process. A list of the districts with re-elections and the candidates running for those seats can be found here.

All 203 of the State House seats are up for re-election. The Democrats need to pick up 20 seats to flip the chamber. A list of the districts and the candidates running can be found here.

NOTE: If you’re unsure what state district number you’re in, type in your address at Open States to get that info.

For a more complete list of state races in the primary, visit Ballotpedia: Pennsylvania Elections 2018

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