Elsewhere in the Region, Schwartz Wins Big

U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, Pennsylvania's lone Jewish House member, easily survived a GOP landslide nationwide.

Schwartz, whose district covers the eastern portion of Montgomery County and Northeast Philadelphia, beat Republican challenger Dee Adcock with 56 percent of the vote to 43 percent, according to unofficial returns. In the city, U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-District 2) won by a far larger margin.

A day after the election, Schwartz wondered whether the Republicans, who will now be the majority in the House, will interested in working with the president and working with the Democrats "to find that common ground."

"It will be a very difficult couple of years for the American people," she predicted.

In the rest of the suburbs, it was a different story. Democrats lost two seats they had taken from the GOP four years ago as part of a big night for the Republican Party.

In the race for the House seat from Delaware County, Republican Pat Meehan handily defeated Democrat Bryan Lentz. Meehan visited Israel for the first time this spring. He closed his speech at a Republican Jewish Coalition rally last week by saying that "a nuclear Iran is something that we just cannot tolerate."

In the hard fought eight district race in Bucks County, a rematch of four years ago, Republican Mike Fitzpatrick defeated Democrat Patrick Murphy by eight percentage points, toppling a rising star in the party.

U.S. Jim Gerlach (D-District 6) whose district meanders from Reading to Lower Merion, easily won a fifth term.

In southern New Jersey's hotly contested race to represent the third congressional district, Republican Jon Runyan, a former Philadelphia Eagle, tackled freshman Jewish lawmaker John Adler.

In Harrisburg, eight years after Philadelphia's own Ed Rendell won the governor's mansion for the Democrats, the office will now once again be in Republican hands.

Republican Tom Corbett, the state's attorney general, roundly defeated Democrat Dan Onorato, the Allegheny County executive. But according to a poll of more than 600 Jewish voters, 68 percent of respondents backed Onorato while 23 percent supported Corbett.

Corbett may not be celebrating his victory for long. According to some estimates, Pennsylvania's looming budget deficit could be as high as $5 billion. Since Corbett has pledged not to introduce any new taxes, the question becomes, just what will he — and the legislature, now firmly in Republican hands — cut in order to balance the budget. (The state constitution requires a balanced budget.)

This scenario could spell some reductions for a host of Jewish agencies that receive state aide, although Corbett has said he would not severely cut social services. 



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