The Lead

Pa. Supreme Court suspends candidate petitions pending redistricting suits

By: and - February 9, 2022 3:12 pm

The Pennsylvania Judicial Center in Harrisburg (Capital-Star file)

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has pushed back the timeline for all candidates to get on the 2022 primary ballot. 

The three-week window for candidates to circulate petitions to get on the May 17 primary ballot was scheduled to begin on Feb. 15. But with arguments in a case over the congressional maps starting on Feb. 18, the court temporarily suspended the period until it makes a final decision on district lines, according to an order issued on Wednesday afternoon.

Delays with the U.S. Census data and partisan fights over the shape of the districts have resulted in unfinalized congressional and legislative districts for Pennsylvania. The lines will play a key role in who wins and loses elections over the next decade.

The decision, which applies to all legislative and congressional races, has left candidates seeking election in the lurch.

State law requires that candidates collect signatures from voters in their districts. The calendar is defined in law, and the state Legislature has not acted to change the date despite the map delays.

In a report issued earlier this week, Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough, who’s advising the high court in the congressional redistricting suit, suggested that petitions begin March 1 and end March 15.

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Stephen Caruso
Stephen Caruso

Stephen Caruso is a former senior reporter with Pennsylvania Capital-Star. Before working with the Capital-Star he covered Pennsylvania state government for The PLS Reporter.

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Marley Parish
Marley Parish

A Pennsylvania native, Marley Parish covers the Senate for the Capital-Star. She previously reported on government, education and community issues for the Centre Daily Times and has a background in writing, editing and design. A graduate of Allegheny College, Marley served as editor of the campus newspaper, where she also covered everything from student government to college sports.

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