Oct. 29, 2019

HARRISBURG – To provide greater transparency for voters, state Reps. Matthew Dowling (R-Fayette/Somerset) and Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh/Montgomery/Northampton) drafted legislation to eliminate the ability for all candidates for public office to cross-file their nomination petitions.

Currently, the Pennsylvania Election Code of 1937 allows candidates seeking to run for school board, county court of Common Pleas and district judges to file nomination petitions for multiple political parties that have become increasingly partisan.

“The positions were originally intended to be non-partisan, but with the advent of money in politics and a hyper-partisan political system, these positions have turned partisan,” Dowling said. “Also, it can be confusing for voters when a candidate is nominated for more than one party, leaving them uncertain about which one truly aligns with their philosophical beliefs.”

“In the federal courts, our state judicial system and even within our county courts back at home, we have seen partisan influence on important rulings, including legislative maps. Cross-filing was meant to eliminate party politics in judicial and school board races. Eliminating the option to cross-file would allow greater transparency for the electorate,” Simmons said.

House Bill 1987 is expected to be considered by the House State Government Committee.

Representative Matt Dowling
51st Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Alison Evans
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