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Politics get local in Pennsylvania primary election

May 19, 2013

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — Former U.S. Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill once declared that “all politics is local,” and voters across Pennsylvania will be making choices in that vein as they head to the polls Tuesday.

Tuesday’s primary election will feature ballot choices in judge, borough council, board of township supervisors and school board races. Republicans and Democrats will be voting to choose their candidates who proceed to November’s municipal election.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Three polling places will change for this primary election. Orrstown (Pa.) borough voters should go to the LSL Sportsmans Club at 3549 Orrstown Road; Chambersburg borough First Ward voters should go to St. Paul United Methodist Church at 750 Norland Ave. instead of Chambersburg Area Middle School North; and Shippensburg (Pa.) borough West End voters should go to West End Fire & Rescue at 49 Lurgan Ave. instead of Shippensburg Area Middle School.

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Turnout in the 2011 primary election was 19 percent, according to Chief Registrar Jennie Aines.

Typically only registered Republicans and Democrats can vote in a Pennsylvania primary, but there are two exceptions in Franklin County this week. Residents of Montgomery and Warren townships who are registered independent or with one of the minor political parties may vote on referendum questions in those municipalities.

In Warren Township, voters will be asked whether they “favor the issuance of licenses to conduct small games of chance” in the municipality. In Montgomery Township, voters will be asked if they “favor the granting of liquor licenses for the sale of liquor” in the township, since Whitetail Resort is seeking to obtain a liquor license.

Among the races this year is one for a vacant judgeship in the 39th Judicial District of the Court of Common Pleas. That judge will be the fifth for the district, and will serve Franklin and Fulton counties.

Candidates for the position are attorneys Jeffrey S. Evans, Jerrold A. Sulcove and Jeremiah Zook.

Other contested races include regions one and three for the Chambersburg Area School Board and the second, third and fifth wards of the Chambersburg Borough Council. Chambersburg also has two Democrats and one Republican seeking to be its mayor.

In Guilford Township, four Republicans are running for one open seat. They are Mark A. Bumbaugh, Chris A. Bender, Ted Bittinger and Donald Clapper.

In Mercersburg, Pa., Anthony Frisby and Jeremy C. Jones are running for mayor. Three people are running for one six-year term on the Peters Township Board of Supervisors.

Republicans Edward Wilson and Robert Gunder are vying for the Quincy Township Supervisors position held by Gunder.

The only statewide contest is between Allegheny County Judge Jack McVay Jr. and Philadelphia Municipal Court Judge Joseph C. Waters Jr. for the Democratic nomination for an opening on the state Superior Court.

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