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Schwartz, Gerlach Face Challenges

March 6, 2008 By:
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The congressional contenders have been whittled down, and it looks as if there won't be contested primaries in District 6 and District 13, after all.

Democrat Robert Roggio and Republican Marina Kats have emerged from their respective fields to challenge U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-District 6) and U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-District 13), respectively.

On Feb. 21, the Montgomery County Democratic Committee threw its support behind Roggio, a relative political neophyte who'd already drawn backing from Democratic leadership in Chester County. His two opponents, Robert Rovner and Mike Liebowitz, withdrew several days later and pledged their support to Roggio.

Rovner, a 64-year-old former state senator, said that he's decided to put all his efforts into helping his son, Steven Rovner, unseat State Rep. Scott Petri (R-District 178). Liebowitz said that by withdrawing, he could give the party favorite the best chance of winning the general election.

Come November, Schwartz -- the state's sole Jewish representative in the House -- will square off with Marina Kats, a Montgomery County attorney who's seeking to become the first Russian Jew elected to Congress.

Kats won overwhelming backing from the Montgomery County Republican Committee. One opponent, Frank Szabo, had already dropped out, and another, Lee Falgoust, called it quits after the endorsement, according to Kenneth Davis, chairman of the Committee.

 

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