Your cheat-sheet to Tuesday’s special election in the 48th Senate District

By: - January 13, 2020 6:30 am

48th Senate District candidates Dave Arnold, left, and Michael Schroeder, right. Source: Dave Arnold and Michael Schroeder campaign Facebook pages.

Voters in York, Dauphin and Lebanon counties will choose between a county prosecutor and an historian on Tuesday in a special election that will send its winner to the state Senate. 

The Jan. 14 race in the 48th Senate district pits Republican nominee Dave Arnold, the Lebanon County District Attorney, against Democrat Michael Schroeder, a history professor at Lebanon Valley College. 

The victor will replace former senator Mike Folmer, the Republican who resigned from the Senate in September after being charged with possession of child pornography.

The new senator will serve the remainder of Folmer’s term, which expires in 2022.

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On the issues

PennLive reporter Jan Murphy grilled both candidates earlier this month to find out where they stand in key legislative debates. 

Check out her story to hear them sound off on legislative redistricting, property tax reform, and retroactive justice for victims of childhood sexual abuse — all issues that Tuesday’s winner is bound to encounter in the Senate over the next three years.

How to vote

The election is open to registered voters in the 48th Senate district. You can use this tool to find out if you live there.

If you are registered to vote in the 48th, here’s where you can find your polling place. Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m on Tuesday.

What comes next?

The Capital-Star will report unofficial election returns after polls close on Tuesday night.

Republicans have controlled the 48th District seat since 1963, according to Wilkes University elections data.

Voter registration data from the Department of State show that registered Republican voters in the district outnumber Democrats 84,000 to 58,000. An additional 25,000 voters are registered as independents.

Folmer won 63 percent of the vote in 2018 — a year when turnout was particularly high, thanks to a hotly contested midterm election cycle.

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Elizabeth Hardison
Elizabeth Hardison

Elizabeth Hardison covered education policy, election administration, criminal justice and legislative news for the Capital-Star from Jan. 2019-April 2021. You can find her on Twitter @ElizHardison.