BY CASSIE SEMYON
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court released the new congressional map set to go into effect for the 2018 primaries.
The revision to the map comes after a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling in late January that “clearly, plainly, and palpably” violated the state constitution.
After sending a Republican majority congress back to redraw the map, the PA Supreme Court said that if a fair map could not be drawn by the Republicans, they would take matters into their own hands.
After Governor Tom Wolf (D) rejected the Republican proposal, the court released their new configuration of Pennsylvania’s 18 districts.
The new map will not apply to the special election in the 18th district on March 13 to fill the vacant seat of Representative Tim Murphy (R), who resigned in October 2017 after an extramarital affair came to light.
The new map makes significant changes to the southeast corner of the state, especially in Philadelphia. Once home to districts one, two, and three, Philadelphia was a stronghold for Democrats in recent years, where the majority of the state was pulling the lever red. Now, Philadelphia lies within districts two, three, and five; district one is now located in Bucks County.
Rep. Bob Brady will not run for re-election for the first district
Nina Ahmad, Willie Singletary, and Michele Lawrence have already declared their candidacy.
Some of those candidates have decided they will challenge incumbents –Singletary plans to challenge Rep. Dwight Evans in the reconfigured third district. Meanwhile, Lawrence has announced her plan to run for the second district – once the 13th district – that is currently occupied by Representative Brandon Boyle.
Nina Ahmad has decided to run for lieutenant governor.
Because Pennsylvania is a swing state that voted Republican during the 2016 Presidential election cycle, this redistricting will continue to keep all eyes on the Keystone state past the primaries in May and all the way through the general elections.
It is expected that the GOP and big conservative names will campaign and fundraise in order to hold onto seats that may be slowly slipping away to the Democrats.
President Trump has already endorsed senatorial candidate Lou Barletta (R) in his race against incumbent Senator Bob Casey (D), and it’s likely we will see more endorsements as elections draw nearer.
Filing for the ballot begins on Feb. 27 and ends on March 20.