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Stephen Zappala Announces Bid To Run For State Attorney General

Erika Beras
90.5 WESA

Long-time Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr. announced his official bid for state attorney general at a luncheon for the Pittsburgh Building Trades Council on Wednesday. 

The event was held at the Sheraton at Station Square.

With his wife, Mary, and one of four sons, Steve, by his side, Zappala vowed to stand up to injustice and emphasized his desire to be a voice for Pennsylvania families.

“They want to make sure the most powerful people and corporations aren’t rigging the systems against them," he said. "They want to know they have an advocate in government who has a record of going to bat for people of all walks of life, no matter their income, no matter their zip code, no matter their religion, no matter what they look like. I have that record.”

He said he will not be taking a leave of absence from his job as he campaigns.

Zappala, 58, has served as Allegheny County district attorney since 1998, launching programs to reform the process by which offenders are prosecuted for both sex trafficking and drug abuse. As state attorney general, Zappala promised to "work his heart out" as Pennsylvania's top advocate.

“There’s so much you can do with that office," he said. "By statute, you touch or concern just about every aspect of somebody’s life. From the older people to the children, to the environment to transparency of municipal authorities. I know what it can do and I’d like to see it (done).” 

Zappala will face Democrats David Fawcett, a Pittsburgh attorney, Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli and former federal prosecutor Jack Stollsteimer, as well as Montgomery County Republicans state Rep. Todd Stephens and state Sen. John Rafferty.

Current State Attorney General Kathleen Kane has also said she intends to run for a second term, but acknowledged her suspended law license could hamper those plans. Kane is also facing charges including perjury and obstruction. 

Zappala declined to comment on his competitors.

“I’m not running against anybody," he said. "I’m running for the office. And that’s how the campaign is going to be run.”

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