JSPAN Launches Policy Center for Reform of Pennsylvania Election Law

JSPAN POLICY PAPER - February, 2004 It took more than two months after the 2003 general election, before Pennsylvania voters learned who won the last open seat on the Pennsylvania Superior Court. In the closest statewide election since the Civil War, the final result depended upon the resolution of court challenges and recount requests. Post-election maneuvering by both political parties revealed a number of weaknesses in the current state election law. As a result, JSPAN announced its blue-ribbon effort to reform the state law. The bipartisan effort is being co-chaired by two acknowledged election law experts: Mark Aronchick, a Philadelphia Democrat, who formerly served as Philadelphia’s City Solicitor, and Robert L. Byer, a Pittsburgh Republican, who formerly served as a judge on the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court. Additional election law authorities assisting the effort are Cliff Levine, an attorney from Pittsburgh and Sam Katz, the former Republican mayoral candidate from Philadelphia. JSPAN members who have an interest in serving on the Election Law Policy Center or who have ideas for Pennsylvania election law reform should send an email to jspan@jspan.org.