Lt Governor candidate John Fetterman and Congressional candidate Madeleine Dean will be delivering the keynote speeches at Thursday’s Candidate Forum in Harleysville, PA. Maria Collett, Linda Fields, Steve Malagari, and Josh Camson (PA state senate and state representative candidates) will be present and interviewed by WHYY journalist Tracey Matisak.
This free, public event will begin at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 11, 2018, at Peter Becker Community Chapel, 800 Maple Avenue, Harleysville, PA. Indivisible Hope, Turn PA Blue, and Indian Valley Democrats are sponsoring this non-ticketed event.
Weather permitting, the Upper Perkiomen Democratic Club will once more be hosting a voter registration and absentee ballot request information table at tomorrow’s East Greenville Community Day (Saturday, September 8th, 2018 – Main Street, East Greenville, PA). We will have forms for voter registration and for requesting absentee ballots.
September 17th is the first day to apply for an absentee ballot in Pennsylvania (and while applications are available online, the form must be printed and mailed to the County Courthouse address found on the online form). While officially an absentee ballot request form may be mailed out as late as the week before the election, since the completed ballot must arrive at the Court House by the Friday before the election (November 6, 2018), to insure that one’s vote is counted one should mail one’s ballot at least a week before the election (and earlier is better).
Voter registration closes on October 9, 2018 (because October 8th is a holiday) – that means the form must arrive at the county seat by that date. One can register to vote online!
Check your voter registration online, to be sure that you haven’t been taken off the rolls for any reason or by error!
Election day is Tuesday, November 6, 2018; polls are open from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.
2018 PA Democratic Candidates
U.S. Senate – Bob Casey
U.S. House of Representatives, 4th District (which now includes all of Upper Perkiomen Valley) – Madeleine Dean
Governor – Tom Wolf
Lt. Governor – John Fetterman
State Senate, 24th District – Linda Fields
State Representative, 131st District – Andy Lee
State Representative, 147th District (Green Lane and Marlborough Township) – Josh Camson
Of most interest to those in the Upper Perkiomen Valley, the following contested primary races have been called:
PA Congressional District 3 – Madeleine Dean
Lt. Governor – John Fetterman
The other statewide races were not contested in the 2018 Pennsylvania Primary Election.
The Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee is holding hearings on Gun Violence policy proposals during the week of April 9th. While only members of the General Assembly can testify in front of the committee, we will make our voices heard on April 11!
Join us as we rally in the rotunda to show the PA Legislature just how many people have had enough and want common sense gun laws.
WHAT: Demand a Vote rally for better Gun Laws
WHEN: April 11th, 2018 10:00AM
WHERE: The Rotunda of the PA Capitol in Harrisburg
CeaseFirePA will be sponsoring buses to attend the rally.
Reserve a seat for yourself and others from Allentown to Harrisburg here.
Temple Beth El will the bus pickup and drop-off location, 1305 Springhouse Rd, Allentown, PA 18104. 7:15AM will be the boarding time, for a 7:30AM departure.
If you are reserving a seat for yourself and others, please ensure that you include each person that needs a seat on the bus. (Bus tickets are free!)
Questions? Contact Michael Cogbill at email@example.com or 215.435.6496.
Montgomery County will be purchasing new voting machines this year. All voting machines will have a paper backup, and will meet state and federal security requirements. The new machines will retain a paper record of all votes cast.
You can view all the voting machines (photos and descriptions) under consideration, and submit your comments on the Montgomery County Voting Machine Feedback Form until Friday, March 16, 2018 at 12 noon.
Thanks to the new map, all of Upper Perkiomen Valley School District is in the same congressional district – District 4! The Pennsylvania primary election is Tuesday, May 15, 2018. Three individuals have announced they are running in the Democratic primary for our newly drawn congressional district; (Pa State Representative) Mary Jo Daley, (Pa. State Representative) Madeline Dean, and Shira Goodman (yes, all women!).
On Tuesday, April 3, 2018, you can meet and talk with these 3 congressional candidates, along with our area’s democratic candidates for PA State House; Andy Lee and Josh Camson, and PA State Senate, Linda Fields. The Upper Perk Area 2 meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Upper Perkiomen Middle School, 510 Jefferson Street, East Greenville, PA and is open to the public.
A few FAQs
- Pennsylvania has 18 congressional districts.
- Each congressional district elects one Representative in the U.S. House of Representatives.
- The U.S. House of Representatives has 435 voting representatives.
- Each congressional district has roughly 710,000 people in it (as of the 2010 census).
- Ideally, each district is composed of communities, cities/suburbs/rural areas with shared interests (not voter registration).
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court, when the politicians in Harrisburg were unable to agree on a new map that adhered to the Court’s ruling, had redistricting expert Nathaniel Persily, a Stanford University law professor, draw the new Congressional District map for Pennsylvania. This is intended to go in effect immediately, and candidates for these districts will be voted on in the spring primary and November election; winners to be sworn in to office in January 2019. On first glance, it looks like all of the Upper Perkiomen Valley may be in the newly drawn 4th District. (If you are not convinced by PhillyNews’ map below, check out PennLive – enlarge the “District 7 becomes District 6 (sort of) map where you can see East Greenville, Pennsburg, Red Hill, and Green Lane in District 4.)
However, bear in mind that Republican legislators are expected to challenge the new map in Federal Court this week.
Local Districts Under the Supreme Court PlanLocal congressional districts under the old 2011 map drawn by Pennsylvania’s Republican-led legislature split 28 counties into several districts, including Montgomery County, which had parts of the Second, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and 13th Districts. The new map released on Monday by the state Supreme Court, which invalidated the the 2011 map, centers Montgomery County in the Fourth District. Only 13 counties are split in the new plan, and Bucks, Chester, and Delaware Counties are each entirely within a single district.
Under the court’s redrawn map, districts more closely align with county lines, and only 13 counties are split among two or three districts. By contrast, under the last map, enacted by the legislature in 2011, more than twice as many counties were split among multiple districts.
In striking down that map last month as unconstitutional, the justices said the new districts should be as compact and contiguous as possible. Their new map, they wrote in an order, is “superior or comparable” to proposals submitted by the participants and interested groups during the legal challenge that led to the historic ruling.
Read the rest of the article Pa. gerrymandering case: State Supreme Court releases new congressional map for 2018 elections by Jonathan Lai & Liz Navratil, STAFF WRITERS
Several local informational events have been scheduled by and for FAIR Districts PA, who will talking about gerrymandering (drawing congressional and state house district lines based on party voter registration to restrict/deny competitive races); How To Make Your Vote Count.
New comers and current members are welcome!
Join FDPA Montgomery County for a presentation about gerrymandering in Pennsylvania and learn about the ways you can help reform the redistricting process. There will be a brief presentation and then, based on attendance and interest areas, we will break into 2 to 5 groups. This will be a great way to meet other members in your district. You will learn about the various ways we are engaging legislators and the media to draw attention to the need for redistricting reform.
Lansdale Public Library (301 Vine St, Lansdale, PA) – Wednesday, September 20, 2017; 7 p.m.
Pottstown Public Library (500 E High St, Pottstown, PA) – Tuesday, September 26, 2017; 7 p.m.
Upper Perkiomen Valley Library (350 Main St, Red Hill, PA) – Wednesday, September 27, 2017; 7 p.m.
While the current occupant of the White House and the members of the Republican Party in Congress have record low approval ratings, and current predictions and polling show Democrats getting the majority of the votes in 2018 midterm elections, it is still quite possible that the Republicans will retain control of the House due to gerrymandered districts. This is why the districts were drawn and why it is so important to both win state house races (in most states, the state legislature draws the district lines every 10 years, after the census count) and to revisit and change who and how congressional districts are created.
Check out these articles; Democrats are projected to win more than 54% of the vote in the 2018 House elections, but only pick up 12 seats thanks to heavily gerrymandered Congressional districts. and this New Yorker article and book review about how, while gerrymandering has always been around to some degree, the Republicans took it to an all new, unprecedented level of distortion and contortion (which accounts for the most bizarre looking districts crossing county lines and dividing neighborhoods); Drawing the Line: How redistricting turned America from blue to red.
State Senator Bob Mensch is conducting an online survey of his constituents (that’s everyone within the Upper Perkiomen Valley), asking what major state issues matter most to you. There are also questions concerning property taxes, state sales tax, and an opportunity to sign up for his electronic newsletter.
There are a total of five multiple choice questions on this survey – this is a great chance to make your voice heard in Harrisburg.