The ‘burbs go blue and historic wins in Reading and Scranton — 3 takeaways from Election 2019 | Wednesday Morning Coffee

November 6, 2019 7:26 am

Voters line up at a polling place on Election Day. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Good Wednesday Morning, Fellow Seekers.

Another election night is in the books. And there’s little doubt that it was a night full of consequential outcomes. Because we’re still a little sleepy, we’re going to dispense with the usual formalities and just leap right into what we learned.

(Dsw4/WikiMedia Commons)

1. Oh the voting machines.
New voting machines, which were supposed to usher in secure elections, ended up causing chaos across the state on Tuesday. Pennsylvania Republicans filed suit on Tuesday night, PennLive reported

The GOP’s complaints stemmed from snafus in York County, where voters struggled with new machines, and where results were still incomplete after midnight. the York Daily Record reported.

And in Northampton County, ballots for the County Court of Common Pleas appeared to have been miscounted, prompting the chair of the county GOP to demand a recount, The Morning Call reported.

In a statement, acting Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar acknowledged the challenged, but said such issues were “isolated,” even as Twitter raged about them.

“We are very pleased to report that the election was carried out statewide with little incident. That’s especially impressive given that 45 counties were using new voting systems today,” Boockvar said. “Thanks to hard-working county election officials, well-trained poll workers and well-informed voters, the majority of the state saw only isolated issues.”

The Delaware County Courthouse (Administrative Office of Pa. Courts image)

2. The Blue-ing of the Philly ‘burbs:
This from the Philadelphia Inquirer:

The political forces that shaped last year’s midterm elections showed no signs of abating Tuesday, as voters turned on Republicans and establishment Democrats alike in races from Philadelphia and Scranton to the suburbs of Delaware and Chester Counties.Locally, Democrats will hold all five seats on the Delaware County Council, a Republican stronghold since the Civil War, and also assumed a majority on the legislative body in Chester County. In Bucks County, Democrats also held a late lead for control of the board of commissioners in a close race.

And in Philadelphia, a third-party insurgent candidate weakened an already marginalized GOP by securing one of the at-large City Council seats reserved for minority parties — a seat Republicans have held for decades.

The Democratic win in Delaware County was particularly profound. It marked the first time since the Civil War that the party of JFK and FDR had captured control of the 5-member council, published reports indicated.


3. Scranton gets its first woman mayor; Reading gets its first Latinx mayor.

There was more history made at the polls on Tuesday night. In Scranton, with Paige Cognetti, a registered Democrat who ran as an independent, becoming the Electric City’s first woman mayor, WNEP-TV and other outlets reported. She replaces former Mayor Bill Courtright, who was forced to resign on July 1 after entering into a plea on on federal corruption charges.

“I think being from Oregon, not being from here is part of that. I think people are hungry for a fresh perspective, I think that my husband’s family has been here for many many generations. That paired together is something really powerful. I think people are ready to move on from the corruption. Being a woman is one thing. It’s really exciting to make history tonight, but I believe my experience in the federal government, working in finance, I think those things are what really pushed me over,” Cognetti told WNEP-TV.

And in Reading, a city with a vibrant and growing Latinx population, Democrat Eddie Moran cruised to victory over challenger Louis R. Perugini to win election as the city’s first Latinx mayor, the Reading Eagle reported.

More from the Eagle:

“My beautiful city of Reading,” Moran began. “We made history tonight. We have sent a message that we will no longer be denied a seat at the table.”Moran is not only Reading’s first Latino mayor but also the first Latino mayor of a top-five Pennsylvania city.

“This victory is bigger than me,” he said. “Tonight we become pioneers. We are setting a new path forward for Latino leadership for decades to come.”


WikiMedia Commons

Our Stuff.
The controversial victims’ rights amendment, Marsy’s Lawwon majority support; still faces a court challengeStephen Caruso reports.

One Democrat and one Republican each picked up a seat on the Pennsylvania Superior Court on Tuesday night.

You can read our live blog of election and campaign coverage from across Pennsylvania — plenty of details and trivia, and maybe even a few song picks — for those of you still jonesing for it.

Our partners from the Philadelphia Tribune have plenty of coverage from the biennial Election Day gathering at Relish, a restaurant in North Philadelphia.

And on our Commentary Page, opinion regular Bruce Ledewitz has a few thoughts on a carbon tax plan that even Pat Toomey could love.

Here’s your #BehthlehemPA Instagram of the Day:

Gov. Tom Wolf
 has no public schedule today.

Heavy Rotation.
We’re back to the ’90s this morning. Here’s a fave from Cake, it’s ‘The Distance.’

Tuesday’s Gratuitous Hockey Link.
Ugh … Carolina lost 4-1 … to Philadelphia on Tuesday night. Today’s a new day, lads.

And now you’re up to date. 

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John L. Micek

A three-decade veteran of the news business, John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's former Editor-in-Chief.