Last night, Democratic Governor-Elect Tom Wolf sailed to easy victory over incumbent Republican Governor Tom Corbett, 55 percent to 45 percent in the gubernatorial election. The win capped off Wolf's months-long lead in the polls, and only minutes after the polls closed several major networks called the race. Wolf's win marks the first time in four decades that a challenger has defeated an incumbent governor running for re-election in Pennsylvania.
A long-time business owner, Wolf previously served as revenue secretary under former Governor Ed Rendell. He differentiated himself from Governor Corbett early on with his promise to implement a 5% severance tax on oil and gas drillers working in the Marcellus Region, increase funding to public education, and finally increase the personal income tax for the highest earners in the state.
The partisan balance in Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation will remain, with 13-5 Republicans to Democrats -- and only two seats changed hands. Republican Representative-elect Ryan Costello defeated Democrat Manan Trivedi as expected, after the DCC pulled funding from Trivedi’s campaign a few weeks ago. Democrat Representative-elect Brendan Boyle defeated Republican Carson Dee Adcock to fill Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz’s seat in PA-13. Boyle’s win means Pennsylvania is now home to an all-male congressional delegation.
In the Pennsylvania state House and Senate, House Republicans picked up eight seats to significantly widen their margin, entering next session with 119 members to the Democrats’ 84. Half of the Senate was up for election last night; as a result Republicans built upon their majority and will enter next session with 30 members, compared to 20 for the Democrats. All in all, it was a three seat pick-up for the Republicans.
Robert Morris University extends its congratulations to Governor-elect Wolf and all of the winning candidates, and to Governor Corbett for his continued service to Pennsylvania. We also want to thank all the students who voted in last week’s election, and we encourage you to vote next year as well when one seat will be up for grabs on the Moon Township Board of Supervisors. To register to vote, go to rockthevote.com.