Oct 18, 2021 - News

Pennsylvania voter registration deadline arrives

An Illustration of an I Voted sticker on the shape of the state of Pennsylvania.

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

Monday marks the last day to register to vote for the Nov. 2 election.

State of play: Elections for state and local judges will dominate next month's ballot.

  • Voters will choose a new justice on the state Supreme Court, which is currently made up of five Democrats and two Republicans. A Republican judge on the state's highest court is retiring.
  • Judges for Superior, Commonwealth, Common Pleas and Municipal courts are also on the ballot.

What else: District Attorney Larry Krasner, a Democrat who's seeking reelection, is facing Republican Charles Peruto.

  • City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart, a Democrat incumbent, has no challenger.
  • Four ballot questions, which you can find here, will also be asked of voters.

What they're saying: David Thornburgh, CEO of the nonpartisan government watchdog group Committee of Seventy, told Axios that in recent years, people have been reminded of how important the state Supreme Court is.

  • The state's highest court notably tossed out gerrymandered congressional maps in 2018, and it has decided several issues around pandemic restrictions, Thornburgh said.

Voter turnout is historically low for municipal elections.

  • For this year's primary, turnout was 21%, a drop from roughly 66% in the 2020 presidential election.

Yes, but: Thornburgh said mail-in ballots could help boost turnout.

  • "Extraordinary turnout last year. Folks that hadn't voted in a while showed up to vote, and this [election] will be some test whether they're only going to show up once every four years," he said.

The city will provide 16 dropboxes for voters to cast mail-in and absentee ballots.

  • Mail-in ballots must be received by 8pm on Election Day.

Go deeper: We've linked resources and more information below.


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