News for Democrats in Upper Perkiomen Valley

As always, fall is a busy time, when people start paying closer attention to political news as the November election grows closer, and opportunities for local political action increases.

While it is true that the Upper Perkiomen Democratic Club has gone dormant (more on that in an upcoming post), many, if not all, of the same people will be involved in the same activities, and welcoming all local democrats to be part of the process!

The Upper Perkiomen Area 2 Democratic Committee (the local Democratic political party) has big plans for this fall, including hosting our Montgomery County (Democratic) Commissioners, Val Arkoosh and Ken Lawrence tomorrow, Tuesday, September 3, 2019 at their scheduled monthly meeting, to which all democrats are invited. Their meetings are held at Open Link Senior Center, 517 Jefferson Street, East Greenville, PA, from 7:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

For nearly twenty years, the UPDC had a voter registration and information table at Community Day on the first Saturday in September in East Greenville. A few years ago, the Upper Perkiomen Area 2 Democrats (UP Area 2 Democratic Committee) began also offering information on voter registration, absentee ballot request forms, and information about candidates and local party activities – last year their table was right across the street from the UPDC table! Rather than duplicate efforts, this voter registration and information effort will now be organized by the UP Area 2 Democrats. Stop by and say hello (or volunteer to help out for an hour or two – contact Area 2 Leader Elaine Hannock at area2dems@gmail.com if you can  help out on Saturday, September 7, 2019).

Over the last few years, both the UPDC and the UP Area 2 Democrats have paraded one after another down Main Street in the annual Upper Perkiomen Halloween Parade. It is our understanding that the Area 2 Democratic Committee  will continue this tradition of representing Democrats in our community in the parade.

While the presidential election is still a year away, the 2019 November election is important – among other decisions to be made on the ballot this fall, 5 out of 9 school board seats are up for election this year!

Stay informed, stay involved, and vote!

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2017 Upper Perkiomen School Board Election Results

The (unofficial) count from all but one voting district (Marlborough, where they were still casting votes as of 8:50 p.m.) is in.

If these numbers hold, the following individuals won seats on the Upper Perkiomen School Board:
Melanie Cunningham
Stephen Cunningham
James Glackin
Kerry Drake
Virginia and New Jersey had good nights. Upper Perkiomen, not so much.

Vote on Tuesday, Nov 7th!

Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. in Pennsylvania on Tuesday, November 7, 2017.
Voter turnout is critical this year (as it is every year) with important statewide and local judicial positions on the ballot, as well as local races for school board and town councils and mayors. The outcome of tomorrow’s race may well determine whether a new middle school is built in the Upper Perkiomen Valley, and who runs local police forces, among other key issues.

This is one of the few times when we’ll suggest you NOT vote straight Democrat; many candidates have cross-filed in these local races, so be sure to take a look at the sample ballot handed out at the polls by the Democratic Party, and know where you stand on the issues and the candidates.

Upper Perkiomen School Board Candidates FOR the new Middle School

  • Warren
  • Pike
  • Maginnis
  • write in John Gehman

Upper Perk School Board Candidate Events

The public is invited to a “Kickoff Event” in support of John Gehman (write-in candidate), Judy Maginnis, Will Pike, and Jon Warren, on Wednesday evening, September 13, 2017. The event begins at 6 p.m. at Butter Valley Golf Course, 3243 Gehman Road, Barto, PA. Gehman, Maginnis, Pike, and Warren are running as a team in this November’s election for the Upper Perkiomen School Board; all four support the building of a new middle school in the Upper Perkiomen school district.

A “Meet the Candidates Night” sponsored by the PTFS (Parents and Teachers for Students) is scheduled for next Wednesday, September 20, 2017 beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Education Center, 2229 E. Buck Road, Pennsburg, PA. This event is open to the public. All Upper Perkiomen School Board candidates have been invited to participate; Gehman, McGinnis, Pike, and Warren all plan to attend.

Upper Perk School Board Election!

Quite often the school board election is decided in the primary, not in November – especially since school board candidates tend to crossfile (run on both the Democratic and the Republican ticket). The Pennsylvania Primary Election this year is on Tuesday, May 16, 2017; polls are open from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m. Whether or not a new middle school should, and will, be built in the Upper Perkiomen Valley school district is the main issue in this year’s school board election.

Here is the list of candidates for Upper Perkiomen School District that will appear on the Democratic Primary ballot (listed in the order they will appear on the ballot) and their stated position on building a new middle school :

(voters may vote for 4 candidates for the 4 open seats)

  • Will Pike – FOR
  • Melanie Cunningham – AGAINST
  • Stephen Cunningham – AGAINST
  • Jessica Giuricich – FOR
  • John L Gehman – UNDECIDED (has gone back and forth on the issue)
  • Judy Maginnis – FOR
  • Kerry Drake – AGAINST
  • Jon Warren – FOR
  • Jame Glackin – AGAINST

DeVos Confirmation, Public Schools, and You!

If you are one of the hundreds of thousands (millions?) who called, wrote, protested, or otherwise engaged in trying to stop DeVos from becoming Secretary of Education, thank you!

While DeVos was confirmed, by the narrowest of margins, requiring a tie breaking vote from Vice President Pence, the fight for good schools in general, and great public schools in particular, is not over.

One of the most important actions you can take on behalf of public education is to pay attention and vote in your local school board elections – in the Upper Perkiomen Valley School District, 4 seats are up for election this year. Petitions to get on the ballot for the spring primary may be circulated beginning on February 14, 2017. The signed and notarized petitions are due at the courthouse in Norristown by March 7, 2017. The primary election in Pennsylvania this year is on Tuesday, May 16, 2017. Because school board candidates nearly always cross file in our area (file to be on the Democratic and the Republican ballot in the primary), the race is often decided in the primary, not in November!

If you are interested in running for the school board, or have already decided to run, please feel welcome to come to one of our Democratic Club meetings to introduce yourself. We meet on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, in the lower level of the Upper Perkiomen Library, 350 Main Street, Red Hill, PA, beginning at 7 p.m.