PA: County Controller Declares Political Independence, First Such Independent or Third Party Official in Over a Century

From the Republican Herald:
County Controller Melinda Kantner is leaving the Democratic Party. During a fundraising event Friday night at Blu Tavern Restaurant, Kantner announced she'd be seeking re-election as an Independent. "I was an Independent before I ran for controller in January 2007. It's what I'm going back to," Kantner said. She has served as county controller since January 2008 as a Democrat . . . 
In a follow-up article from the Republican Herald, the publication discovers that there is a long history of third party politics in the county:
County Controller Melinda Kantner has made history. Since at least the late 1890s, there has not been a sitting county row officer or commissioner who has not belonged to either the Republican or Democratic party, according to county Election Bureau records and election results in the Schuylkill County Archives Office. "There's a first time for everything," Kantner said last week.

Two weeks ago, the incumbent ditched the Democratic Party, became an independent, and is now gearing up for a potential three-way November General Election. Decades ago, races for county row offices were often melees. For example, in the 1915 county elections, at least six parties fielded candidates. The mainstay Republican and Democrat parties had candidates on the ballot, but so did the Washington, Citizens, Socialist and Labor parties. Those parties were represented on the ballot for prothonotary, controller, county commissioner and other offices, according to county archives . . .

No comments: