While there are countless eligible adults who apathetically decline to register to vote and/or are habitually absent from the polls, many Pennsylvanians who are registered disappear during off years and only materialize for Presidential Elections. It is simply not enough to only vote during Presidential Elections. Many PA legislators on both sides of the aisle, have started their careers in politics in elected municipal, county &/or statewide offices.
Imagine, if more progressives had voted in non-Presidential elections, these 10 GOP lawmakers may not be in the positions of power that they're in today:
• Jim Cawley – current Lt. Gov, formerly a Bucks County Commissioner; big supporter of fracking & Chair of Governor's Marcellus Shale Advisory
• Carol Aichele – current Secretary of the Commonwealth, formerly a Chester County Commissioner (also notably named a Defendant in voter suppression lawsuit re 2008 election)
• Dominic Pileggi – currently a PA State Senator, formerly Mayor of Chester, "champion" of gerrymandering
• Donna Oberlander – currently a PA House Rep., formerly Clarion County Commissioner; author of HB 818 restrictions on funding for abortions
• Pat Toomey – current US Senator, formerly a US House Rep and prior to that held a seat on Government Study Committee in Allentown (recently voted against expansion of Unemployment Insurance)
• Ryan P. Aument – currently a PA State Rep, formerly Clerk of Courts in Lancaster County (co-sponsor of Daryl Metcalfe’s Definition of Marriage bill & Oberlander’s HB 818)
• Martin T. Causer – current PA State Rep, formerly Annin Township supervisor (co-sponsor of Metcalfe’s Definition of Marriage bill and Oberlander’s HB 818)
• Jerry Knowles – current PA State Rep, formerly Schuylkill County commissioner, before that borough councilman and mayor of Tamaqua; believes in eliminating school taxes & reportedly thinks PA schools are adequately funded
• Charlie Dent – current US House Rep, formerly PA State Senator & House Rep (endorsed Romney in ’12 presidential election, supporter of the building of the Keystone XL pipeline)
• Joe Pitts – current US House Rep, formerly PA State Rep (publicly defended CEO of Chick Fil A’s anti-gay comments)
What I'm getting at is, if you are in favor of a cleaner environment, equal rights for the LGBT community, access to affordable health care for women and preserving life saving financial safety nets like Unemployment Insurance, YOU NEED TO VOTE IN EVERY ELECTION!!!
So, the next time you think about skipping the whole voting thing, just remember, that Borough Council member, Mayor, Commissioner, Supervisor etc could one day be a State Rep or Senator...That State Rep/Senator could one day represent PA in the United States Congress...