Primary 2019

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

In 2017, when Magistrate District Judge Mikhail Pappas and Allegheny County Councilor Anita Prizio beat well-established incumbents in the fall, many observers figured the candidates – who’d each been backed by the Democratic Socialists of America – had merely caught incumbents sleeping in low-interest races. 

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala held off challenger Turahn Jenkins in one of the more closely watched races this primary season. The 21-year incumbent scored a resounding victory, with about 59 percent of the vote.

Sarah Schneider

Tuesday night’s election results mean that the Pittsburgh Public Schools District will have three new directors on the nine member board who will face some crucial tests in the coming months, including the budget and fate of its senior leadership.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Bobby Wilson toppled Pittsburgh’s District 1 City Councilor Darlene Harris, following a sometimes bitter election fight, likely removing the sharpest critic of Mayor Bill Peduto from the nine-member body. 

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Challenger Bethany Hallam toppled John DeFazio in the race for the Democratic "at-large" seat on Allegheny County Council — the latest case in which an upstart progressive challenger toppled a well-established Democrat. 

Amanda Green-Hawkins via Facebook

A longtime steelworkers' union lawyer from Pittsburgh has been nominated by Democrats to run for one of two open seats on a statewide appellate court.

Amanda Green-Hawkins won a spot on the fall ballot in Tuesday's primary election for the state Superior Court.

Races among two other Democrats and three Republicans remained too close to call Tuesday night. The 15-seat court handles civil and criminal appeals from Pennsylvania's county courts.

Matt Rourke / AP

Voters have picked Republicans to fill three open seats in the state Legislature in heavily Republican districts in south-central and western Pennsylvania.

Matt Rourke / AP

Voting is underway in this year’s primary elections, even if it is hard to tell. 

Although offices including county executive, county controller and county treasurer are on the ballot, they are not contested on either the Republican and Democratic ballot. 

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

A handful of candidates are hoping to replace Pittsburgh's District 9 City Councilor Ricky Burgess in next week's primary, but he says it takes years to make the connections he's made over the past three terms. 

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

In recent years, Pittsburgh City Councilor Darlene Harris has frequently opposed Mayor Bill Peduto's agenda. But if she's sometimes alone around the council table, she is now in a three-way race for reelection in City Council District 1, north of the rivers.

Pennsylvania Primary Features A Couple High-Profile Matchups

May 13, 2019
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania's primary election will decide nominees or officeholders for several high-profile offices, including mayor of the nation's sixth largest city and one of the state's 18 members of the U.S. House.

Pennsylvania's primary election is May 21.

It features primary elections for Philadelphia mayor and two statewide appellate court seats. It also features special elections to fill three open seats in the Legislature and one in Congress.



An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

It didn’t take long after a white police officer shot and killed a black unarmed teen last summer for activists to find a second person on whom to lay blame: Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala.

Activists called for the district attorney’s removal, even before he decided a week later that he would charge East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld with homicide for fatally shooting Antwon Rose. 

Julia Zenkevich / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania democrats are counting on the midterm momentum they garnered last year as they gear up for the 2020 presidential race. Donald Trump's victory in Pennsylvania in 2016 came as a surprise to many democrats, including Nancy Patton Mills, who now serves as chair of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Two candidates running for the District 1 seat on Pittsburgh City Council, Quincy Swatson and Chris Rosselot, have withdrawn from the race.