2022 Pennsylvania Primary Election Results 

Prepared by the Pennsylvania Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies Team

NOTABLE HIGHLIGHTS

Statewide Races: Governor/Lieutenant Governor

  • On the Democratic side, AG Josh Shapiro, who ran unopposed, will officially be the Democratic Candidate for Governor. His running mate will be his endorsed candidate for Lieutenant Governor, State Representative Austin Davis of McKeesport (south of Pittsburgh). He won with the largest margin of any of the statewide candidates. Austin is the first Black nominee for Lieutenant Governor in PA History.
  • On the Republican side, State Senator Doug Mastriano won the Republican primary with 43% of the vote, despite a last-minute attempt by party leaders to coalesce around a challenger. Mastriano, who was endorsed by President Trump, sought to overturn the 2020 election results and was present on Capitol grounds during the January 6th insurrection. Mastriano has been a highly controversial candidate who exceeded his polling expectations by approximately 10 points. His running mate will be Carrie Lewis DelRosso, a State Representative from Oakmont (outside Pittsburgh). Rep. DelRosso had defeated 30-year incumbent and long-time House Democratic Leader Frank Dermody in the 2020 General Election.

Statewide Races: US Senate

  • Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman won the Democratic nomination with nearly 60% of the vote, winning every county in the state, and beating his nearest challenger by more than 30 points. Fetterman had an unconventional election day during which he had a pacemaker installed after having a stroke just days ago. He is expected to make a full recovery and, according to his wife, will be released from the hospital in approximately one week.
  • The Republican race remains too close to call, with Trump-endorsed Dr. Mehmet Oz currently leading Dave McCormick by approximately 1,500 votes. McCormick stands to gain ground as provisional, and remaining mail-in ballots are counted. In third place, controversial conservative commentator Kathy Barnette, despite a surge in polls the past week, could not garner enough support to win the nomination.
    • A Pennsylvania law passed in 2004 requires an automatic recount if the difference between the top two candidates for a statewide office is 0.05% of the vote or less. The PA Secretary of State determines if a recount is required and must do so by 5 p.m. on the second Thursday after the election. For the current US Senate Republican race, this date would be Thursday, May 26. The recount must be scheduled to be held by the third Wednesday following the election (June 1) and must be completed by noon of the following Tuesday (June 7). The second-place candidate can decline a recount by submitting a letter in writing to the Secretary of State by the second Wednesday after the election (May 25).

Open Seats

  • In the hotly-contested Democratic race to represent the 12th US Congressional District in Pittsburgh, State Representative Summer Lee has declared victory over lawyer and Democratic Activist Steve Irwin, though the race has not been officially called. Lee currently leads by nearly 500 votes, with 99% reporting. Lee, a progressive, is running with the support of notable progressive figures, including Senator Bernie Sanders, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey. Irwin, supported by many other local democratic officials, saw an influx of controversial support from the United Democracy Project — the political action committee for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC – who spent millions on anti-Lee ads in the primary.
  • In the 17th US Congressional district vacated by Conor Lamb, Democrat Chris DeLuzio will face Republican Jeremy Shaffer in November in what is expected to be a tightly-contested race in the suburbs of Pittsburgh.

Incumbent Losses - A total of 11 incumbents lost their reelections

  • One of the most notable upsets was GOP state House Appropriations Committee Chair Stan Saylor, who upstart Wendy Fink defeated in the 94th district race. Saylor, who has held the York County seat since 1993, fell by a 55%-44% count.
  • Another York Countian – 47th district Republican Incumbent Keith Gillespie – was resoundingly defeated by challenger Joe D’Orsie. Gillespie had served in the chamber since 2003. D’Orsie, 36, is the Communications Director at Praise Community Church in East York.
    • The dual losses caused York County GOP chairman Jeff Piccola to resign his position effective immediately. State Rep. Mike Jones had gone against Piccola, endorsing the two challengers, stating it was time for a change.
  • Two-term Democrat Rep Brian Kirkland was defeated in the 159th House District primary by Carol Kazeem, an outreach worker from Chester.
  • Frontline nurse Tarik Khan defeated five-term Democrat Rep Pam DeLissio in the 194th House District, which serves Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties.
  • Republican Incumbent Senator Pat Browne, the Majority Appropriations Committee Chair, is in a tight battle with Jarrett Coleman in the 16th District, covering parts of Lehigh and Bucks counties. With 98 of 104 precincts reporting, Coleman, a school board director in the Parkland School District, has a 30-vote lead. 
  • Two-term Republican Rep. Mike Puskaric from Allegheny County was defeated in the 39th House District by former Elizabeth Township supervisor Andrew Kuzma.
  • Former Westmoreland County Republican Committee chairwoman Jill Cooper unseated first-term Republican Incumbent Rep. Jason Silvis in the newly redrawn 55th District.
  • Democratic State Rep. Martell Covington, who won a special election in April to represent the 24th District in Allegheny County, was defeated by longtime reproductive justice activist La’Tasha D. Mayes.
  • Incumbents that were ousted in member vs. member races as a result of new district maps included:
  • Rep. John Hershey, who fell to Perry County Rep. Perry Stambaugh for the GOP nomination in the 86th district, which covers Perry and Juniata counties.
  • In the Lehigh Valley, Republican Rep. Ryan Mackenzie beat Rep. Gary Day in the 187th District.
  • Democratic Rep. Chris Rabb also beat out Rep. Isabella Fitzgerald in the redrawn 200th House District race.

Regional Highlights: Southeastern PA

Over the last several election cycles, Philadelphia has been dominated by younger, progressive candidates winning elections against long-time, establishment Democratic incumbents. While several incumbents beat back challenges, most self-identified progressive candidates came out on top, despite several lacking the endorsement of the Philadelphia Democratic Party.

Congress

  • Several Democratic incumbents in uncontested primaries cruised to victory last night. Congressman Evans (D-Philadelphia) and Congressman Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) handily defeated primary challengers. Republican candidate Guy Ciarracchi is leading the four-person field to win the opportunity to challenge Democratic incumbent Chrissy Houlahan (Chester/Berks).

State Senate

  • A special election for the 5th Senate District was held yesterday to fill the seat vacated by former Senator Sabatina. Democrat Jimmy Dillon defeated Republican Sam Oropeza by eight points. This seat is not up for re-election until 2024.
  • Senator Anthony Williams (D-Philadelphia) beat progressive challenger Paul Prescod in the 8th Senatorial District. 
  • Current PA Rep. Tracy Pennycuick won the Republican primary for the 24th Senatorial District. She will face Democratic challenger Jill Dennin in November to replace retiring Republican Senator Bob Mensch.

State House

  • Incumbent moderate Amen Brown (D-Philadelphia) narrowly defeated progressive challenger Cass Green.
  • Incumbent Stephen Kinsey (D-Philadelphia) defeated progressive challenger Andre Carroll in the 201st District that encompasses parts of Northwest Philadelphia.
  • Ben Waxman, a progressive-aligned candidate, will likely go on to represent the 182nd House District covering Center City, which is being vacated by current Rep. Brian Sims (D-Philadelphia).
  • Former aide to Congressman Boyle Anthony Bellmon won the Democratic primary to represent the 203rd District. This is a newly redrawn district and does not have an incumbent.
  • Progressive incumbents Elizabeth Fiedler (184th District) and Rick Krajewski (188th District) lacked support from the Philadelphia Democratic Party but easily won their primaries.
  • In Northwest Philadelphia and parts of Montgomery County, a former nurse and progressive challenger Tarik Khan defeated current Rep. Pam DeLissio.
  • In the only race that had two Democratic incumbents run against each other due to redistricting, the more progressive-leaning Rep. Chris Rabb defeated Rep. Isabella Fitzgerald in the redrawn 200th district. 
  • In Delaware County, incumbent Brian Kirkland was defeated by progressive challenger Carol Kazeem in the Democratic primary.  

Ballot Questions

  • Philadelphians voted overwhelmingly to approve all four ballot questions that would alter the makeup and operations of the Zoning Board of Adjustment, remove gender-specific language from the City Charter, and add the Philadelphia Fair Housing Commission to the Home Rule Charter.

Regional Highlights: Western PA

  • In the 16th US Congressional District, stretching from Erie down to Butler County, Dan Pastore, fishing business owner, and attorney, won the Democratic nod to challenge incumbent Republican Mike Kelly of Butler.

  • In the 17th US Congressional District, Democrat Chris DeLuzio won his primary to face Republican Jeremy Shaffer in November in what’s expected to be a tightly contested race in the suburbs of Pittsburgh.

  • Two progressive incumbent women, State Representatives Jessica Benham and Emily Kinkead defeated County Democratic Committee-endorsed challengers easily.

  • The two incumbent representatives elected in special elections to fill seats vacated by Mayor Ed Gainey and his Chief of Staff, Jake Wheatley, saw mixed results on Election Day. Representative Aerion Abney won his primary to continue serving in the State House, but reproductive justice activist La’Tasha D. Mayes defeated Rep. Martell Covington.

  • Western PA will likely see upticks in visible representation in both Harrisburg and Washington, regardless of outcomes this November. John Fetterman, Austin Davis, Carrie Lewis DelRosso, and Dave McCormick all tout roots in the region.

Regional Highlights: North Central PA

  • In Lycoming County’s 83rd District to replace retiring Republican Rep. Jeff Wheeland, Republican businessman Jamie Flock defeated his primary challenger Ann Kaufman 52%-48%. There will not be a Democratic candidate on the ballot in November.

  • In the 107th District representing portions of Northumberland and Schuylkill counties, home health care nurse and executive Joanne Stehr defeated Ronald Tanney to win the Republican primary to replace retiring Rep. Kurt Masser. There will not be a Democratic candidate on the ballot in November.

  • Clearfield and Cambria county voters selected Republican Dallas Kephart to replace retiring Republican Rep. Tom Sankey in the 73rd District. Kephart is a former PA Commonwealth Court law clerk and congressional staffer. There will not be a Democratic candidate on the ballot in November.

Regional Highlights: South Central Pennsylvania

  • In the newly configured 34th Senate District, Rep. Greg Rothman easily defeated Republican challenger Mike Gossert with 66% of the vote. The new district is heavily Republican, so Rothman will almost certainly be Cumberland and Perry counties' next state senator.

  • In the 87th House District, State Senate aide Thomas Kutz easily won his election bid over businessman Eric Clancy. Again, in the predominantly Republican district, Kutz will almost certainly win the election in the fall.

  • In York county, incumbent State Senator Kristin Phillips-Hill ran unopposed in the primary. She'll face off against Democrat Judith Higgins in November.

Regional Highlights: Northeastern PA

  • The newly-drawn 118th district, currently held by Democratic Rep. Mike Carroll, saw contested races on both sides of the ticket. The new House seat includes municipalities from Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties and saw two candidates from each county. Former Avoca Mayor Jim Haddock holds a narrow lead (102 votes) over Allison Lucarelli, with nearly 1,000 mail-in votes from Luzerne County to be counted. Haddock, from Luzerne County, is likely to prevail. On the Republican side, former PennDOT spokesman James May (from Lackawanna County) easily beat Mike Lombardo. This seat could be a toss-up seat in the Fall that Republicans might pursue to flip.

  • The 113th seat, currently held by Thom Welby, who is not seeking re-election, saw Scranton Council President Kyle Donahue beat challenger Patrick Flynn. 

Regional Highlights: Lehigh Valley

  • Long-time incumbent, and current Appropriations Chairman, Senator Pat Browne currently trails challenger Jarrett Coleman by more than 5% in this Lehigh County District. The winner will face Democrat Mark Pinsley in the general election.

  • Current Republican State Representatives Ryan Mackenzie and Gary Day were forced to run against each other in the newly drawn 187th District. Mackenzie is up by more than 20% and will win the seat and face no opposition in the fall.


Authors

Jim Davis

Managing Director, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

jdavis@cozen.com

(717) 703-5891

Joseph Hill

Senior Principal, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

jhill@cozen.com

(215) 665-2065

David F. Bonsick

Principal, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

dbonsick@cozen.com

(717) 773-4214

Beth A. Brennan

Principal, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

bbrennan@cozen.com

(717) 773-4213

Kevin J. Kerr

Principal, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

kkerr@cozen.com

(412) 620-6496

Brianna A. Westbrooks

Government Relations Associate, Cozen O'Connor Public Strategies

bwestbrooks@cozen.com

(215) 665-4757

Related Practices