This is Why You Need to Run for the State Assembly in One Sentence

End of story.

Nearly half the state lawmakers whose terms expire at the end of this year have already received some good news – they have no opposition at all in 2014 and can plan to be voting on legislation again come January.

How is the Pennsylvania Democratic Party, and ultimately the General Assembly, supposed to become more progressive and more liberal when half of all seats go unopposed every election?  How are we supposed to fund public education and higher education when half of all seats go unopposed?  How are we supposed to have a higher minimum wage, health care coverage for all Pennsylvanians, stronger environmental laws, fair labor practices, a functioning infrastructure, adequate public transportation systems, smart growth policies, strong social safety nets when the people who go to Harrisburg never face a primary challenge, let alone a general election challenge?

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About Sean Kitchen 681 Articles
Contributor and Assistant Editor for the Raging Chicken Press. Stationed in Harrisburg covering politics in the capitol. You can send tips to or reach me on twitter at @RCPress_Sean!
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4 Comments on This is Why You Need to Run for the State Assembly in One Sentence

  1. Here in Monroe County we are contesting all four available seats – 115th, 176th and 189th PA House and the new 40th PA Senate. But the Republicans will be extremely well funded, so despite all four districts being rated as Democratic performing and having a large majority of registered Democrats in the county, they will be an uphill battle. We need everything we can to get the vote out.

    • Nice and good luck with your efforts. I’d like to see people start campaigning on ideas and do it outside the traditional 2 year model where campaigning on ideas last for 6 months to a year. This is where the legislature needs to be putting out alternative bills and having those seeking office run on those ideas. When I was in Harrisburg last year as an intern, all I heard from House Dems was “we’re just going to hit the ‘no button’ because we won’t be able to sway anything in the budget process.” And that type of thinking still pisses me off to this day.

  2. Sean,

    I am doing all I can to get the vote in in my section of Bucks County. I live in the 31 Assembly District held by Democrat, Steve Santarsiero. He is now the Chair of the Southeast PA Democratic Caucus. He plays a pivotal role and he has many times before assuming that role, rose from the floor of the House to talk about environmental, education and other progressive issues and has been gaveled into silence as being out of order during open comment period at the start of a legislative session. If you are still in Harrisburg, he would be a key legislator to approach to do more than just push the “no button.”

  3. Amen and thank you. Please see my website and like my FaceBook page. “Currently, there is no opposition balloted against John Payne for the 106th Legislative District in the PA General Assembly’s House of Representatives. He may well run unchallenged, while 66% of PA Democrats think PA is headed in the wrong direction. I humbly request you write in my name, in the May 20th Democratic Primary, so that John Payne might not go unchallenged in the Nov 2014 General Election. I need at least 300, and the most, write-in votes to acquire the Democratic ballot position in November.”

    The 106th covers the Hershey/Hummelstown/Middletown area, shown on the “One Page Handout” at the website.

    My platform is expanded on “106th Announcement & Platform” at the website:

    Charter schools accountability.
    Acknowledge and respond to harm from fracking.
    A generous severance tax and equal moratorium protections from fracking.
    Support organized labor, by opposing ALEC.
    Offer single payer healthcare, or at least expand medicaid.
    Full marriage equality.
    Strong climate action plan.

    Steve Todd, PE, LEED AP
    Democratic Write-In Candidate, PA-106th Legislative District
    Hummelstown, PA 17036-9743

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