Tuesday, March 9, 2010
The Pennsylvania Democratic Party Executive Board followed the recommendation of the Southwest Democratic Caucus in choosing Mark Critz to run as the Democrat in the special election to fill Jack Murtha’s unexpired term. The special election will be held May 18th. Voters in the 12th congressional district will also be casting primary ballots that day for the November general election. Critz is a Johnstown resident who worked for Murtha for several years, rising to the level of District Director. In a written statement Critz says, “Today, I pledge to all western Pennsylvanians that I’ll work tirelessly to earn their support so that we can come together and get to work bringing jobs to our communities and getting our economy back on track.” Several other Democrats had thrown their hats into the ring for the nomination but it is unclear how many of them will run in the May primary. Chief among the challengers could be former state treasurer and auditor general Barbara Hafer. 49 votes were cast in yesterday’s meeting, 30 went to Critz and 18 went to Hafer. Today is the deadline to file nominating petitions for the primary. Murtha died last month from complications following gallbladder surgery at age 77.