Libertarian and Tea Party Candidates May Influence PA Gubernatorial Race

So claims the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:

 …in this year’s race for governor, the lineup of candidates who have apparently qualified for the ballot suggests a scenario that could, in a tight race, hurt the Republican front-runner, Attorney General Tom Corbett.

In addition to his Democratic opponent, Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato, the ballot will include Marakay Rogers, the Libertarian Party candidate, and John Krupa, running under the banner of the tea party…

Current polling — Mr. Corbett’s lead has hovered around 10 points in recent surveys — and the state’s political history suggest that the potential for those candidates to siphon votes represents more of an irritant than a significant threat to the Republican. But should the race tighten in the coming weeks, that could change.

Mr. Krupa’s candidacy is a particular wild card, as it is the first time anyone has run under the tea party name in a statewide race in Pennsylvania. The movement is diffuse and multifaceted, however, and Mr. Krupa’s ballot label does not mean that the various tea party groups have anointed him.

While Krupa, who originally planned to run as a Constitution Party candidate in the example of Peg Luksik, is probably safe from the attacks of being a Democratic plant, he will probably have a hard time pulling a significant number of conservative votes without money. Besides that, Krupa and Rogers must both make it onto the ballot.

The Greens, who managed to gather just enough signatures to pass the minimal signature threshold for US Senate candidate Mel Packer, had their petitions challenged earlier in the day. However, it initially appeared that no challenge to the Libertarian or Tea Party petitions would be forthcoming. The Post-Gazette article noted:

Spokesman Kevin Harley said that Mr. Corbett had no plans to challenge the petitions of either of his two new rivals, but added, “I assume the state party is doing its due diligence.”

Mike Barley, a spokesman for the state GOP, said the party had no plans to challenge any petitions.

Apparently somebody had another idea.

Libertarian Marakay Rogers and Tea Party candidate John Krupa were challenged in the campaign to succeed Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell, who will step down in January.

The Libertarians believe their petitions have a high rate of validity, and in addition turned in about 5,000 more than the minimum.

8 thoughts on “Libertarian and Tea Party Candidates May Influence PA Gubernatorial Race

  1. Andy

    They need to survive their petition challenges first, because if they don’t they will not even be listed on the ballot.

  2. NewFederalist

    “They need to survive their petition challenges first, because if they don’t they will not even be listed on the ballot.”

    AND get to pay some costs EITHER way which lessens the funds with which they have to campaign.

  3. AroundtheblockAFT

    Given the history of bad names (which may be as inconsequential as a legitimate voter putting down his nickname instead of his registration name) on petitions of this size (19,000) the challenge to the Greens will finish them off. As for the LPP and the “Tea Party” guy, it is unlikely their petitions could survive a serious examination.

  4. NewFederalist

    Joe Murphy- according to Ballot Access News ALL minor party petitions were challenged before the deadline passed.

  5. Mik Robertson

    They cannot be much of an influence if they are not on the ballot. We’ll see what the challenge petition looks like.

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