The U.S. Senate is the upper chamber of the Congress. In concert with the House of Representatives, the Senate enacts laws, which the president may sign or veto. Senators also approve presidential appointments (including Supreme Court nominees). Each state has two senators, who are elected for six-year terms in even-numbered years (approximately one third of the Senate’s seats are up for election at a time). There are no term limits and the salary is $174,000.

CANDIDATEs

  • barletta lou

Lou Barletta (R)

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Hazelton native Lou Barletta focused on immigration issues while serving as the Luzerne County city’s mayor from 1999 to 2010. Currently, Barletta represents PA’s 11th District in the U.S. House of Representatives---a seat he won in 2010 after failed bids in 2002 and ’08. Born in 1956, Barletta attended Bloomsburg State College (now Bloomsburg University) but dropped out to pursue a baseball career. More successful was the pavement-marking business he and his wife, Mary Grace, founded in 1984. It was the largest in PA when they sold it in 2000. The Barlettas have four grown daughters and eight grandchildren.

One big thing I've accomplished that voters should know about is...As a former mayor, I saw firsthand how gangs were recruiting young kids away from school and into a life of crime. I joined with Democratic state Sen. John Yudichak to start the Schools and Homes in Education (SHINE) after-school program in Luzerne County, which helps working families and gives kids an alternative to getting in trouble. As a member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, I rescued funding for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, which provides half of SHINE’s funding, when Congress and the Administration called for eliminating it. For my efforts, the National Parent Teacher Association gave me with the Congressional Voice for Children Award.
If elected, one thing I'd work tirelessly to achieve is...I have been working tirelessly to secure our borders and enforce our laws to keep our families safe.
If elected, one thing I'd never vote for is...I will never support a bill affirming the right of a city to declare itself a “sanctuary city,” or openly refuse to comply with federal law and cooperate with federal law enforcement.
  • casey bob

Robert P Casey, Jr. (D)

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Bob Casey, who’s running for his third term in the U.S. Senate, has held elective office continuously since 1997. The son of former PA Gov. Bob Casey Sr., Casey was elected PA Auditor General (1996, 2000), PA Treasurer (2004) and before winning his Senate seat in 2006, lost a 2002 gubernatorial bid. Born in Scranton in 1960, Casey graduated from Holy Cross College (1982) and the Catholic University of America’s Columbus School of Law (1988), and practiced law in Scranton from 1991 to ‘96. He and his wife, Terese, live in Scranton. They have four daughters.

  • neal gale

Neal Gale (Green)

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Neal Gale’s campaign is focusing on climate change and clean energy. Gale, 66, served on the Energy Advisory Commission in Abington Township, where he lives with his wife and daughter, and has managed an energy-affordability program for low-income residents in New Jersey since 1996. He ran for Judge of Elections in Abington Township in 2017.

One big thing I've accomplished that voters should know about is... I have worked in the energy efficiency, clean energy world for the past 40 years. The past 22 years of which, I have helped manage a low-income energy affordability program which has served over 120,000 households, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and making energy payments more affordable for the occupants. 

If elected, one thing I'd work tirelessly to achieve is... I will work tirelessly and with the greatest urgency to introduce legislation to adopt the framework of the Green New Deal, designed to engage and challenge our existing economy, re-purposing it, so that it supports the transformation of our current energy infrastructure to 100% clean, renewable energy. This ambitious, yet secure economic and environmental program, developed by the Green Party, is intended to sustain all of our people with the resources necessary for a healthy, purposeful and dignified life, while maintaining a healthy planet.

If elected, one thing I'd never vote for is... Restricting women's reproductive rights or the civil rights of any group within our society.

 

  • Dale Kerns

Dale Kerns (Libertarian)

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Delaware County native Dale Kerns, 34, is a former member of the Eddystone Borough Council who was appointed to his seat in 2013 following a failed electoral bid in 2011 as a Republican. He’s also the vice-chair of the Delaware County Libertarian Party and a former vice-chair of the PA GOP’s Liberty Caucus. A master electrician who manages commercial and industrial projects for an electrical contractor, Kerns is a 2014 Widener University graduate who serves on the board of directors of Goodwill of Delaware and Delaware County. Kerns and his wife, Nicole, live in Ridley Township with their two daughters.

One big thing I've accomplished that voters should know about is... I am a co-founder of the former Little Angels Foundation. I tirelessly worked to fulfill the mission of helping children with life-threatening illnesses. I am now on the Board of Directors for the Goodwill of Delaware and Delaware County, working toward the group’s stated goal of “helping people overcome barriers to self-sufficiently work.”

If elected, one thing I'd work tirelessly to achieve is... Ending the War on Drugs and treating addiction as a medical issue rather than a criminal issue. We've spent decades putting people in prison, and the opioid epidemic has destroyed much of Western PA. It's time we change. I've traveled across the Commonwealth discussing why "Addiction is Not a Crime" and why we should end the War on Drugs. My family has felt loss due to the government's policies, as have many of the people I met during my tour. It's something we must fix immediately.

If elected, one thing I'd never vote for is... Increased taxes or spending, and more broadly, anything which delegates to the federal government any powers not expressly provided by the Constitution.

For questions about Seventy's Voter Guide, please contact bettergov@seventy.org.