Primary election has no problems, low turnout as races set

Apr. 24—Crawford County's primary election was uneventful Tuesday with overall turnout expected to be low due to few actual races among Democratic and Republican candidates.

"It's been slow," Scott Schell, chairman of the Crawford County Board of Elections, said of voter turnout across the county's 61 precincts.

Voters in the county were casting ballots for president; a U.S. Senate seat; a congressional seat; and statewide offices of attorney general, auditor general and treasurer, as well as state representative.

While Joe Biden and Donald Trump had opponents for their respective Democratic and Republican nominations for president, their primary opponents — Dean Phillips for Biden and Nikki Haley for Trump — had suspended their campaigns before Pennsylvania's primary.

For the U.S. Senate, only Bob Casey, a Democrat and the incumbent, and Dave McCormick, a Republican, were the only candidates on their respective party ballots.

The few races on Tuesday were among statewide offices.

On the Democratic ballot, Jack Stollsteimer, Eugene Depasquale, Joe Khan, Keir Bradford-Grey and Jared Solomon were seeking the Democratic nomination for attorney general. On the Republican ballot, Dave Sunday and Craig Williams were the only two candidates for the party's nomination.

For auditor general, Malcolm Kenyatta and Mark Pinsley were seeking the Democratic nomination; Tim Defoor, the Republican incumbent, was unopposed for his party's nomination.

For state treasurer, Ryan Bizzaro and Erin McClelland were seeking the Democratic nomination; Stacy Garrity, the Republican incumbment, was unopposed.

Crawford County had its congressional district seat up for election as well as three seats representing the county in Pennsylvania's General Assembly this year, but there were no contested races in Tuesday's primary.

For Pennsylvania's 16th Congressional District, Mike Kelly, a Republican from Butler and the incumbent congressman, was seeking his party's nomination to represent the district which is all of Erie, Crawford, Mercer, Butler and Lawrence counties and part of Venango County. On the Democratic Party ballot, Preston Nouri, an entrepreneur from Erie, was the sole candidate for that party's nomination.

Crawford County is part of three seats in Pennsylvania's General Assembly — the 6th District, 64th District and 65th District — but for two of them, no Democrat was on the ballot.

In the 6th District, Brad Roae, a Republican from East Mead Township and the current representative, was unopposed for the Republican nomination for a 10th term. Michael C. Walker, a Democrat from West Mead Township and a businessman, was the only candidate to file for that party's nomination. The 6th District area now encompassing the Meadville and Cochranton areas and all of western Crawford County.

In the 64th District, R. Lee. James, a Republican from Oil City and the current representative, was unopposed for the Republican nomination for a seventh term. No Democratic candidate filed for that district. The 64th District includes the Titusville area and southeastern Crawford County.

In the 65th District, Kathy L. Rapp, a Republican from Warren and the current representative, was unopposed for the Republican nomination for an 11th term. No Democratic candidate filed for that district. The 65th District includes northcentral and northeastern Crawford County including Cambridge Springs and Saegertown.

Keith Gushard can be reached at (814) 724-6370 or by email at