The Lead

Zappala accepts GOP nomination for Allegheny Co. District Attorney

By: - June 27, 2023 9:37 am

Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala (Pittsburgh City Paper photo).

PITTSBURGH — Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala lost in the Democratic primary to the county’s Chief Public Defender Matt Dugan, but will appear on the ballot in the fall as the Republican nominee, according to the county elections division.

Zappala received 9,697 of more than 11,000 write-in votes from Allegheny County Republicans. He’ll now face Dugan in a rematch of the Democratic primary, where Dugan beat the six-term incumbent 55.6% to 44.3% 

Zappala’s campaign did not immediately reply to a request for comment from the Capital-Star on Tuesday. On election night, he strongly suggested he wasn’t finished, telling supporters “[I]f we stick around to the November race, we are going to kick some ass and take some names.”

Allegheny Co. DA Zappala nabs enough write-in votes to appear on GOP ballot in the fall

Dugan didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment. But in May, he told the Capital-Star if he did face Zappala again in November, he would not change his campaign strategy at all.  

“Our message will be exactly the same,” Dugan said. “Our effort will be exactly the same, and we’re going to outwork him. Again.”

Zappala served six terms as Allegheny County district attorney; his father, Stephen Zappala, Sr. was a justice on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and his grandfather Frank Zappala was an attorney and Democrat who represented Allegheny County in the state House from 1935 to 1939.

The general election is Nov. 7.

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Kim Lyons
Kim Lyons

Kim Lyons is a veteran western Pennsylvania journalist who has covered people and trends in politics and business for local and national publications. Follow her on Threads @social_kimly