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Pennsylvania State House 25th District: A guide to the 2022 primary and candidates

90.5 WESA

What's at stake: A newly redrawn map of state House districts hasn’t changed the 25th district much, and the candidates running to hold it this year are familiar, too. The district includes eastern Allegheny County communities such as North Versailles, Monroeville, East McKeesport, Pitcairn, Turtle Creek, Wall, Wilmerding, and portions of Plum and Trafford. Incumbent Brandon Markosek, a conservative Democrat who all but inherited the seat from his father Joseph Markosek, is running for reelection. Hoping to challenge him in November are two Republicans: John Ritter and Stephen Schlauch. Republicans control the House but this district has a Democratic edge.

Note: Campaign finance fundraising totals include contributions raised in 2021 and 2022. Data updated 5/1222.


Brandon Markosek

Pennsylvania state House Rep. Brandon Markosek, D-Allegheny County, center, sings the national anthem in the House chambers, Tuesday Jan. 1, 2019 in Harrisburg. Pennsylvania state lawmakers were sworn in on New Year's Day. The House welcomed 42 new members and seven new senators took the oath of office on Tuesday after winning election in November.
Jacqueline Larma
Brandon Markosek

Incumbent Democrat Brandon Markosek has held the office since 2018, when his father Joseph Markosek stepped down after a quarter-century of holding it. Like his father, Markosek is among the more conservative members of the county's Democratic delegation. Prior to becoming a state legislator, Markosek worked as a community outreach representative for state Sen. Jim Brewster. He says his priorities include economic development, senior care, education, public safety, veteran services, and infrastructure.

Party: Democrat  
Experience: Pennsylvania House of Representatives – 25th District (2018 – present)
Education: University of Pittsburgh (B.S.); Duquesne University (M.P.A.)
Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter
Candidate Surveys: League of Women Voters
Major endorsements: Allegheny County Democratic Committee; Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers
Fundraising total: $28,100


John Ritter

John Ritter
Courtesy the Ritter campaign
John Ritter

Ritter is a school director and vice president of the board of directors for the Gateway School District. He’s run in the state House race multiple times, including a 2020 bid in which he lost to Markosek by a 58-to-42 margin, but the Republican has yet to win a seat in the historically Democratic district. Ritter has a background in health care and was first voted onto the Gateway School Board more than six years ago. He says his top priority is helping Pennsylvania and the 25th district recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Party: Republican
Experience: Gateway School Board (2015 – present)
Education: Slippery Rock University (B.S.); Indiana University of Pennsylvania (B.S.); Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (M.S.)
Links: Website | Facebook | LinkedIn
Candidate Surveys: League of Women Voters
Major endorsements: None currently available
Fundraising Total: Not yet announced

Stephen Schlauch

Schlauch, a long-time financial manager who has worked for BNY Mellon and Federated Investors, previously served on the board of directors for the Plum Borough School District. He also ran for the 25th District seat in 2018 but lost to Markosek by the same 58-to-42 margin that Ritter lost by two years later. Schlauch says he wants to focus on helping small businesses, stopping critical race theory (though critical race theory is not taught in K-12 public schools in Pennsylvania), and ensuring local police have “tools and training.”

Party: Republican
Experience: Plum Borough School District Board of School Directors (2016 – 2020)
Education: Washington & Jefferson College (B.A.)
Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn
Candidate Surveys: League of Women Voters
Major endorsements: None currently available
Fundraising Total: $30,410

Your guide to the elections for Allegheny County executive, district attorney, treasurer, council and more.

Julia Zenkevich reports on Allegheny County government for 90.5 WESA. She first joined the station as a production assistant on The Confluence, and more recently served as a fill-in producer for The Confluence and Morning Edition. She’s a life-long Pittsburgher, and attended the University of Pittsburgh. She can be reached at
Emily Previti is a podcast producer and data journalist for Kouvenda Media.