Record Number of Women Serving in the State House
When Republicans Leslie Rossi and Abby Major took the oath of office last week, a new record was set in the state House. The make-up of the chamber now consists of 57 women holding office. This is the highest number of sitting female representatives in the chamber’s history. This new statistic is one more footnote in a history-making legislative session with women for the first time also holding the position of caucus leader in both the Senate and House. Rossi and Major won Special Elections in May to represent the 59th and 60th state House districts, respectively.
Senator Scott Martin Considering Gubernatorial Run
The Republican field of gubernatorial hopefuls may be getting a bit more crowded. Last week, state Sen. Scott Martin, R-Lancaster, announced he is forming an exploratory committee to look into a potential 2022 run for governor. Martin has elected experience on both the local and state level. Prior to serving in the state Senate, where he is currently in his second term, he was a Lancaster County commissioner. If he does decide to throw his hat into the ring, he will face off against former U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, and possibly several others, in the Republican Primary Election. You can read more about the upcoming election – including others who are rumored to be considering a run – in this PennLive article.
Congresswoman Houlahan Declines Senate Run
One of the more closely watched elections in 2022 will be Pennsylvania’s open U.S. Senate seat – with the outcome possibly determining which party will control the Senate. Despite openly considering a run and support from certain Democratic circles, Congresswoman Chrissy Houlahan, D-Chester, has made the decision not to seek her party’s nomination. Instead, she said she will run for re-election to her congressional seat. According to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer, with Houlahan out, moderate Democrats are now rallying behind Cong. Conor Lamb. Lamb, who is considering a run, has not officially declared his candidacy. The party is seeing some division between its more progressive and moderate factions on whom they should unite behind in next year’s election.
Senator Manchin Won’t Support Democrat’s Election Overhaul Legislation
In a break from party ranks, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, D-WV, has said he will not support a Democratic proposal to overhaul the country’s election law. The proposal – which narrowly passed the U.S. House – would increase federal involvement and oversight in several areas that have historically fallen under the purview of the states (including redistricting and voting requirements). In media interviews, Manchin called it the “wrong piece of legislation to bring our country together…I’m not supporting that because I think it would divide us further.” With Republicans united against the proposal, his opposition all but seals its fate, despite support from the Biden administration.