Primary election outcome yields a few surprises
Less than 19 percent of the registered voters in Montgomery County cast their ballots in Tuesday’s primary. Apathy aside, there were a few races that deserve a closer look as voters look to the November general election.
Former Congressman Patrick Murphy of Bucks County was topped by former Lackawanna County prosecutor Kathleen Kane for the Democratic nomination for attorney general.
Kane, who spent 13 years as an assistant district attorney, has become the first woman of either party nominated to run for the position. She will face Republican District Attorney David Freed of Cumberland County, who was unopposed.
The office of attorney general became an elected post in 1980 and since that time no Democrat has occupied it.
Kane’s victory was a surprise since Murphy had the backing of Democratic leader Bob Brady as well as other party leaders. Murphy served two terms in Congress before he was voted out in 2010.
In the race for the nomination for U.S. Senator, Republican Tom Smith, a former coal company owner, bested five other candidates for the party’s nomination to go up against Democrat Senator Bob Casey in November’s general election.
Smith topped Rep. Sam Rohrer of Berks County, Bucks County businessman David Christian, Cumberland County lawyer Mark Scaringi and venture capitalist Steve Welch.
In the Republican primary race for State Auditor General, John Maher from Allegheny County topped Frank Pinto. Maher, 53, is founder of a Pittsburgh accounting firm. Pinto, 67, is retired from Dauphin County.