More than White House on election ballot

It’s no secret that there is an election less than one month away.

It’s also no secret that said election is highlighted by the race for the White House — the Republican ticket of Donald Trump and Mike Pence against the Democatic ticket of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

But there will be a third candidate on the ballot in addition to a host of state-wide races on the General Election ballot.

And voters in Pine Grove Township will also have an interesting ballot question.

But, first, the race for the White House — one third party ticket has made it to the ballot.

Jo Jorgensen and Jeremy “Spike” Cohen are the Libertarian Party’s candidates for president and vice-president, respectively.

Jorgensen — the party’s vice presidential candidate in 1996 — is a lecturer in psychology at Clemson University while Cohen, who promotes libertarian ideals on a full time basis.

County voters will also pick a Congressman next month.

Congressman Glenn Thompson, who first took a seat in Congress in 2008 when Warren County was part of the 5th district and is the current 15th District representative, is seeking another term and will be challenged by Robert Williams, a Democrat from Clearfield County, who says he moved here to be near family and was an EMT and associate pastor in California.


Shifting to state-wide races, the treasurer oversees a staff of 360 employees and protects nearly $100 billion in state assets, per patreasury.gov. The treasurer sits on a series of boards, administers the unclaimed property program, manages the state’s 529 College and Career Savings Program and generally “safeguards the financial health of the state.

The current treasurer is Joe Torsella, a Democrat from Flourtown, Pa., who is seeking a second term. Torsella has degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and, prior to office, served as the CEO of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, as chair of the Pa. State Board of Education as well as a U.S. Representative to the United Nations, a post which carried the rank of ambassador.

Torsella is challenged by Stacy Garrity, a Republican from Bradford County. Garrity served three deployments and left the U.S. Army Reserve at the rank of colonel, twice awarded the Bronze Star. Garrity earned a degree in finance and economics from Bloomsburg University with a certificate from Cornell University. Garrity is currently a vice-president at the firm Global Tungsten.

The Green Party’s candidate for treasurer is Timothy Runkle, who works in environmental consulting as a senior project manager and frequently submits letters to the editor in central Pennsylvania. The Libertarian Party has put forward Joseph Soloski for the office. A CPS since 1985, Soloski managed his own accounting firm in the Pittsburgh area for 27 years before serving as a private comptroller and financial analyst.


In a nutshell, the Auditor General — unsurprisingly — performs audits. The office audits state agences, municipal governments, school districts, public pensions, corporate tax returns and entities that receive state funding support. Term limits prevent current Auditor General Eugene DePasquale from running again. He’s seeking election to Congress in the 10th District which includes Harrisburg.

Seeking the office on the Republican side is Timothy DeFoor, the Dauphin County (the county seat is Harrisburg) controller. DeFoor started in public service working as an investigator for the state Office of Inspector General before shifting to service as a special agency with the Attorney Genera investigating Medicaid fraud and illegal prescription drug diversion. He then transitions to the role of a fraud inspector and internal auditor for UPMC and federal contractors.

Nina Ahmad is seeking the office on the Democratic ticket. Ahmad, a native of Bangladesh, would become the first woman of color to serve in a state-wide executive capacity in the state’s history. Ahmad completed a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Pennsylvania and has owned a small business. She served as deputy mayor for public engagement in Philadelphia most recently.

The Green Party has put forward Olivia Faison of Philadelphia. She has served on various health-related boards in Philadelphia while the Libertarians have put forward Jennifer Moore, who appears to be the vice-chair of the state party and an elected municipal auditor in Delaware County.


Josh Shapiro is seeking a second term as the state’s top prosecutor. He served in the state House before a term on the Montgomery County board of commissioners. A graduate of Georgetown Law, Shapiro was appointed chair of the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency before he took over the reins of the AG’s office.

He is challenged by Heather Heidelbaugh, a Republican attorney from Allegheny County. A partner at the law firm Leech Tishman, Heidelbaugh attended law school at the University of Missouri prior to a move to Pittsburgh where she has worked for many years. He has been appointed previously to the Governor’s Commission on Judicial Appointments and was invited to the White House by then-President George W. Bush to interview for an appointment to the Third Circuit of Appeals. She has also chaired the state advisory committee that assisted in selecting a U.S. Attorney, marshall and federal judiciary for Pennsylvania.

The Green Party has nominated Richard Weiss for Attorney General. Weiss worked for the federal government at the U.S. Agency for International Development. Libertarian Daniel Wassmer highlights decades of private practice legal experience in Pennsylvania, New York and Connecticut.


State Representative Kathy Rapp is running unopposed for another term as the 65th District’s representative in the state House. Serving there since 2005, Rapp currently chairs the Health Committee and also sits on the Environmental Resources & Energy Committee.

For State Senate, Republican incumbent Scott Hutchinson is seeking another term representing the 21st District, which he has done since 2013. Prior to his Senate service, Hutchinson was a representative in the House from 1992 to 2012. He is challenged by Shelbie Stromyer, a retired registered nurse from Venango County.


Voters in Pine Grove Township will see the following question on their ballot: “Do you favor the granting of liquor licenses for the sale of liquor in the township of Pine Grove, county of Warren, state of Pennsylvania?”

Possible answers are simple — “Yes” and “No.”

It has been illegal to sell alcoholic beverages in the municipality since 1935.

Former Warren County commissioner and now private businessman John Bortz Jr. has been working on this initiative since returning to his position as club manager of Cable Hollow Golf Course.

“This makes perfectly good sense if you’re going to expand your restaurant business,” Pine Grove Township Supervisor Carmen Ferranto told the Times Observer in July. “The supervisors have been supportive from day one of (Cable Hollow getting its liquor license). We have often talked about liquor licenses in the context of economic development; this is a township that sits strategically between Warren and Jamestown – it makes sense that this would be a place that a restaurant might want to invest in. But no upscale restaurant would want to come without a liquor license.”

The last time a Warren County municipality considered this question was in 2003.

The referendum is not specific to Cable Hollow. If it passes, the business and any others that meet the requirements would be able to apply for a license.


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