It's refreshing to see that the 6 State House seats in the county will actually be contested this fall. In 2008 none of the 5 Democratic incumbents faced a Republican in the general election much to my chagrin. This time out we have a full slate on both sides plus a couple of Libertarians thrown into the mix.
As usual the incumbents will be well financed and so far the challengers have little or no money but that could change in the next few months. It's not like there are not people in Luzerne County willing to toss some of their spare change to GOP candidates. 10th CD Republican candidate Tom Marino's FEC report shows more than $30,000 in contributions from people in the county and many of the same names show up on the lists of contributors for statewide Republican candidates. The trick this time is to get those people to actually support the local candidates unlike past elections and to be fair some of them of them have actually been bankrolling the Luzerne County GOP operation over the last few years.
The top target for the Republicans has to be the open seat in the 119th District where Gerald Mullery won a spirited Democratic primary easily but spent all his money doing it. Rick Arnold
doesn't have any money either and to make it more interesting there is a Libertarian Brian Bergman.
Tarah Toohill surprised some people by getting just 800 votes less than longtime 116th State Rep Todd Eachus in their respective unopposed primary elections. Eachus has about $185,000 cash on hand and Toohill has about $2000. Blog buddy McGruff has done his best to tie Eachus to the bonusgate scandal and other transgressions. Who knows, lightening may strike in this one.
In the 121st Eddie Day Pashinski has about $30,000 going into the fall and his Republican challenger James O'Meara didn't raise a dime at the last reporting deadline but that will change if you want to have desert with him.
Mike Carroll has pleasantly surprised me with his desire to overhaul the campaign finance laws (there aren't many) of Pennsylvania and reform the redistricting process. Forget the the bat thing. He is opposed in the 118th by Terrance O'Conner who wants to solve the fiscal crises of the PA by repealing the sales tax on ammunition. Carroll has $26,000 cash on hand and O'Conner didn't report anything.
One of my favorite State Reps has always been Phyllis Mundy. She has been a champion for senior citizens and the rate payers of NEPA Blue Cross and lately has been trying to stop the rape of our environment by the gas drilling companies. Her Republican opponent is West Pittston Mayor Bill Goldsworthy who I don't know much about but he seems to be a good guy. The Libertarian in the race will make Goldy's life more complicated. Tim Mullen is a third party candidate I can root for. I have long advocated that the minor party's like the Greens, Constitutional and Libertarians, etc. concentrate on local elections that they may just win instead of running candidates for President, Governor and Senator that don't have a chance. Build a bench folks. As far as money goes Goldy and Mullin don't have any and Phyllis has about $67,000.
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