For the past three weeks East Whiteland/Charlestown and county candidates have been busy collecting the needed signatures to get their names on the Democratic ballot. Many of you attended our annual Pizza Petition Party on February 24.
Some candidates are able to “cross file” and have their names on the Republican Primary ballot! Likewise you may see Republican names on our Democratic Primary ballot on May 21 when we next vote.
How many signatures are needed depends on which race you wish to enter. Our Great Valley School Board candidates need to obtain only 10 signatures from registered voters in GVSD. Someone running for County Office such as Sheriff or Commissioner needs to get 250. Most candidates try to get double that amount to be sure that every signature is valid.
On Sunday, March 10 the Chester County Democratic Committee held a Notary Party for any and all candidates running for office in Primary 2019. Many folks from our zone attended. Michele Vaughn is running as one of two candidates for Register of Wills. Dr. Neha Mehta is running for Region 2 GVSD. All forms needed to be notarized and then turned in to Chester County Voter Services by 4:30 pm March 12.
Voter Services of Chester County collects all petitions and then begins the process of creating the ballot that we’ll see on May 21. A few things happen along the way. Individuals may challenge the validity of a nomination petition within seven days of the filing deadline. Voter Services writes on their website:
Typically, signatures are challenged on the basis that the signer was not qualified to sign the candidate’s nomination petition or paper, or the information provided by the signer is illegible. On some occasions, the validity of a signature is challenged on the basis that the signer’s handwriting or signature does not match that contained in the signer’s registration record. Most other challenges are based on the accuracy of the information provided by the candidate on the Candidate’s Affidavit or Statement of Financial Interests.
Ballot position is the next step in the election process. If there are more names than the number of votes that may be cast for an office, a drawing is held for ballot position.
An interesting side note for the General Election in November:
Since the current Governor of Pennsylvania is a registered Democrat, all Democratic party candidates will appear first. If the office requires a vote for more than one candidate, names will be listed according to the number of votes received in the Primary, with the highest vote getter listed first.
We wish all of our candidates the best of luck as the petition process ends and we await the results of the CCDC Endorsement Convention on March 19. Zone Leader Jerry Pyne will lead our 16-member delegation of Committee Persons, Zone Leader and Assistant Zone Leader. Our own Marsha Peltz, Vice Chair of CCDC, will be seen on the Convention stage throughout the process!
The 2019 petition period ends on Tuesday, March 12. Feel free to reach out to Jerry or Marsha about our Primary or if you would like to run for office one day!