The primary election is set for Tuesday, May 20, and there are some hot races on the ballot.
Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Here is a look at the local races:
• Governor: Gov. Tom Corbett is unopposed on the Republican side.
Four Democrats are in the running: U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz; State Treasurer Rob McCord; Katie McGinty, a Rhawnhurst native and St. Hubert High School graduate who once headed the state Department of Environmental Protection; and Tom Wolf, a York County businessman and former secretary of the state Department of Revenue.
Wolf is considered the favorite thanks to effective television commercials he ran early in the campaign.
• Lieutenant Governor: Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley is unopposed on the Republican ticket.
Five Democrats are running: State Sen. Mike Stack; former congressman Mark Critz; state Rep. Brandon Neuman; Harrisburg City Councilman Brad Koplinski; and Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith.
Stack began the election cycle running as a moderate for governor, but has pivoted to a progressive campaign for LG. He has a financial edge on the field, having carried over money from his Senate and governor accounts. He is listed first on the ballot. While there is usually an anti-Philadelphia bias in Democratic primaries, it is hard to see Stack losing in a crowded field.
• 13th Congressional District: Democratic Rep. Allyson Schwartz is running for governor.
The Republican candidates are Dee Adcock, a swimming pool company owner who gave a strong showing against Schwartz in 2010, and Beverly Plosa-Bowser, a retired U.S. Air Force colonel.
The Democratic candidates are state Sen. Daylin Leach, state Rep. Brendan Boyle, Dr. Val Arkoosh and former congresswoman Marjorie Margolies.
Most observers expect Boyle, as the only Philadelphian in the race, to easily win the city part of the district, although five of the 14 ward leaders are with Margolies. Boyle repeatedly says he is the only nonillionaire in the race.
While Boyle might not do so well in Montgomery County, he could still pull off the victory if the other three candidates somewhat evenly split the suburban vote.
• 2nd Senatorial District: In 2011, city elections commissioner Marge Tartaglione endorsed Marty Bednarek over Bobby Henon in the Democratic primary in the 6th Councilmanic District. Tartaglione was targeted for defeat that May, and she lost in the primary to end a 36-year career.
Now, some of the same power brokers who ended Marge Tartaglione’s career are trying to beat her daughter, Sen. Tina Tartaglione. They’re backing Danny Savage, a ward leader from Northwood and a former city councilman. Tomas Sanchez, husband of City Councilman Maria Quinones Sanchez, also is running.
The Tartaglione/Savage battle is playing out in mailboxes across the district.
In Savage’s mailings, he has criticized Tartaglione for missing Senate votes while accepting hikes in her pay and pension, and for sponsoring measures such as Egg Month. Two mailings featured Marge Tartaglione, reminding voters that she enrolled in the city’s Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP), only to seek re-election. Henon, who went on to win the Council race, is quoted in one mailing as saying, “I have known and admired Danny Savage for many years, dating back to his productive time on City Council. Danny has a passion for public service and the drive to get things done. Danny knows these neighborhoods. Danny knows these people because he actually spends time here, helping people. I need a partner in Harrisburg who will help me fight for the people of Philadelphia and ensure that we receive the state resources that we need and deserve. The current leadership of the 2nd Senatorial District is sorely lacking. We deserve better.”
Tartaglione’s mailings, mostly paid for by the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, include mentions of her successful effort to raise the minimum wage in 2006 and her current attempt to raise it again. A couple of them note the serious spinal cord injury she suffered in a boating accident, leaving her in a wheelchair, and indicate that she fought for issues such as education funding from her bedside. Joseph Kovel, president of the Pennsylvania State Troopers Association, described her in a mailing as a “proven champion for public safety.”
The Republican candidate is John Jenkins, admissions director at West Catholic High School.
• 172nd Legislative District: Democratic Rep. Kevin Boyle is being challenged in the primary by military veteran Jeffrey Voice.
• 173rd Legislative District: Democratic Rep. Mike McGeehan is not seeking another term.
The Republican candidate is Mike Tomlinson.
The Democratic candidates are Mike Driscoll, Dennis Kilderry and Paul DeFinis.
Driscoll, a married father of five from Torresdale, has the backing of the Democratic ward leaders, former District Attorney Lynne Abraham and Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5. His mailings have focused on education and jobs. He’s busi-ness de-vel-op-ment ad-min-is-trat-or for the Phil-adelphia Fed-er-al Cred-it Uni-on. He formerly served as deputy sec-ret-ary of the De-part-ment of Gen-er-al Ser-vices in the ad-min-is-tra-tion of Gov. Bob Ca-sey.
Kilderry is an elec-ted of-fi-cial of In-su-lat-ors Uni-on Loc-al 14 and longtime committeeman in the 55th Ward. He is the volunteer president of the advisory committee at Tacony’s Roosevelt Play-ground. There, he has helped add sports teams, or-gan-ize cleanups and paint over graf-fiti. “I give my heart to that playground.”
DeFinis is an auto body shop owner who is active with the Upper Holmesburg Civic Association. One of his top priorities is monitoring the redevelopment of the former Liddonfield Homes housing project.
• 179th Legislative District: Rep. James Clay faces a Democratic primary challenge from Jason Dawkins, a former City Council aide.
• 202nd Legislative District: Rep. Mark Cohen, in office for 40 years, faces a Democratic primary challenge from well-funded lawyer Jared Solomon, who is president of the Castor Gardens-based Take Back Your Neighborhood civic association.
• City Council at-large: Former Democratic Councilman Bill Green now heads the School Reform Commission.
The special-election candidates are Democrat Ed Neilson, a state representative from the Northeast; Republican Matt Wolfe, a lawyer and ward leader from West Philadelphia; and Libertarian Nikki Allen Poe.
Neilson is proud to say he has not missed a vote while campaigning. School District of Philadelphia funding is his current top priority. He is running hard in the Council race despite the Democrats’ big voter-registration edge.
“I’ve been in every neighborhood throughout the city,” he said.
• Ballot questions: City voters will decide on three proposed changes to the Home Rule Charter. One would allow city elected officials to remain on the job while they seek a higher office. ••