Monday, May 17, 2010

Governor -- Pennsylvania -- Democratic Primary

Tomorrow is primary election day here in Pennsylvania, and the Democratic incumbent Governor Ed Rendell can't run for a third term, because of a term limit in the state constitution.

Several Democrats are vying for a chance to succeed Rendell. I described them in this earlier post.

It took a while for a front-runner to emerge but, by now, Don Onorato, county executive of Allegheny County (which includes Pittsburgh), has established a big lead in the polls.

Pennsylvania has a long-established pattern of switching back and forth between Democratic governors and Republican governors, at eight-year intervals. If that pattern holds, we will elect a Republican this year. Polls indicate that Republicans will make gains throughout the U.S. next November, which only reinforces that expectation.

But there is another pattern of alternation, between governors from the eastern and western parts of Pennsylvania. Rendell is a Philadelphian, so, this year, it is the westerners' turn. Is that why his party seems to be preferring Onorato over his primary opponents, some of whom are from the Philadelphia area?

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