Governor, US Senate top ballot filled with interesting races
By Mike McGann, Editor, UnionvilleTimes.com
The mailers have been sent, the commercials aired and the prognosticators have pontificated. Now all that’s left is for you, the voters of the Unionville Area, to vote.
Although you’ve probably seen enough about all of the candidates to last a lifetime, here’s quick primer on who is running where and for what across our area. There will also be quick links at the bottom of this story to find out where the polls are in your town.
The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and any registered voter can vote. If there’s a question about whether you are eligible to vote, make sure that you cast a provisional ballot — whether it counts or not can be decided later, but if you don’t cast a provisional ballot, you can’t go back and vote later if it is determined that you were eligible. If you have problems or questions call your county department of voter services: in Chester County, (610) 344-6410 and in Delaware County, contact the Election Bureau at (610) 891-4673.
There are a number of high-profile race this year — including two statewide races for Governor and U.S. Senate and three local congressional races (yes, amazingly, the Unionville area is broken up into three different house of representative districts) and a pair of state house races.
With millions of words published about this election, including on this site, we’ll just keep it to quick reference guide, to remind you who is running and for what.
Here’s a closer look:
Governor — Dan Onorato (D) vs. Tom Corbett (R)
The race to replace outgoing Gov. Ed Rendell has been, as is typical, a nasty one. With the two Western Pa. natives going at it hammer and tong since May. While Corbett has been alternately hammered and praised for his pledge to not raise taxes, despite the commonwealth facing a $4 to $5 billion deficit in 2011, Onorato has been unable to unshackle himself from Rendell who has managed to go from wildly popular to wildly unpopular in his eight years in office.
Corbett is the sitting state Attorney General and has launched a number of high-profile investigations into corruption in the state legislature. While his supporters say he is a reformer, his critics say he used the AG’s office to further his political agenda.
Onorato is is Allegheny County Chief Executive. While he’s touted his ability to create jobs in the western Pennsylvania county that contains Pittsburgh, he’s been hit for tax hikes, including an increase in the alcohol tax.
U.S. Senate — Pat Toomey (R) vs. Joe Sestak (D)
Another nasty race in the battle to succeed Sen. Arlen Specter, who switched parties to avoid a nasty primary against Toomey, only to lose a nasty primary against Sestak.
This might be the biggest idealogical gap in the area, with Toomey considered to be among the most conservative candidates. From the stimus, to gay marriage, to extending tax cuts, these two pretty much disagree on virtually every issue.
Toomey is a former president of The Club For Growth and has been hit for his ties to Wall Street and the financial industry. His supporters argue that he is a fiscal conservative, fought for lower taxes and kept his pledge to serve only three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Sestak, a retired admiral who served in the Clinton White House, has represented the 7th Congressional District in the U.S. House. Sestak commanded a carrier battle group prior to his retirement in 2005. Sestak has a strong pro-environmental voting record, fought for improved education and health care funding, but supported measures that would make congress find funding before authorizing new spending.
Continued next page: congressional and legislative races