The Lead

Pa. Rep. Patty Kim launches campaign for 15th Senate District seat

By: - October 19, 2023 1:33 pm

(Photo via Patty Kim campaign)

State Rep. Patty Kim (D-103rd District) launched her campaign for the 15th state Senate District on Thursday, and already has the backing of a long list of Pennsylvania Democrats and state labor leaders. 

Kim, who was first elected to the state House in 2012, said she is “so energized by the opportunity to represent even more citizens and families in this community,” in a press release announcing the campaign’s launch. 

“I know intimately the issues facing my neighbors here because they are the people I live next door to, do community projects with, see at the grocery store, restaurants and worship with,” Kim said. 

GOP State Sen. John DiSanto is currently in his second term representing the 15th District, which includes a large swath of of Dauphin County.

Kim said that DiSanto “appears poised to run” for another term, despite making a pledge in 2016 to retire after his second term expires

DiSanto has not confirmed whether he’s seeking reelection. He currently serves as the chair of the Senate Banking & Insurance Committee, Vice Chair of the Urban Affairs & Housing Committee, and is a member of the Education, Labor & Industry, and Transportation committees.

Kim said DiSanto “has failed us with his eight years of low energy, a narrow mind, and no good ideas,” adding that she is a supporter of raising the state’s minimum wage to $15 per hour, providing paid family leave, addressing gun violence, and expanding access and affordability of healthcare.

Prior to serving in the state House, Kim was a TV news journalist and won a seat on Harrisburg City Council in 2005. 

Kim posted a video on social media on Thursday morning with her announcement, which includes a social media posts from the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Campaign Committee reading “We’re with her!!” 

This race is likely to be on Pennsylvania Democrats’ radar in 2024 as they try to flip the Senate. According to data provided by the Kim campaign, President Joe Biden carried the district’s current configuration by 15 points over then-President Donald Trump in 2020. 

DiSanto defeated Democratic challenger George Scott by 3 points in 2020

Kim also announced that she will not seek reelection for the state House’s 103rd District, to focus on her campaign for the 15th Senate seat.

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John Cole
John Cole

John Cole is a journalist based in Philadelphia. He's worked for various outlets such as The Northeast Times, PoliticsPA, and PCN. In these previous roles, he covered a wide range of topics from local civic association meetings to races across the commonwealth. He earned a degree in journalism from Temple University.