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Pennsylvania State Representative District 145

Description of office: The General Assembly is the legislative branch of government in Pennsylvania. It is composed of two houses: the Senate is the upper house, and the House of Representatives is the lower house. A majority vote in both houses is necessary to pass a law. The PA House of Representatives consists of 203 members representing one district each, with an equal number of constituents. Representatives must be at least 21 years old, have been a citizen and a resident of the state four years and a resident of their respective districts one year before their election, and shall reside in their respective districts during their terms of service. The House develops budget packages, makes taxation decisions, allocates spending, and passes laws (including redistricting in collaboration with the Senate). The House also has the exclusive authority to impeach public officials. Representatives also serve on various policy committees that may propose legislation. Term: 2 years Salary: $106,422 Vote for ONE.

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  • Candidate picture

    Vera Cole

  • Candidate picture

    Craig Staats

Biographical Information

What do you see as the most pressing issues facing Pennsylvanians, and how would you address them?

What changes would you support making to Pennsylvania’s voting laws to expand access, ensure security, and support local election officials and processes?

What legislation would you support to comply with the Commonwealth Court's ruling that Pennsylvania’s school funding system is unconstitutional and must be reformed?

What changes, if any, would you support making to Pennsylvania’s abortion laws?

County Bucks
Occupation Retired
Education BS Mechanical Engineering, MS Industrial Engineering, PhD Information Science
Qualifications I'm an engineer and teacher and have lived in the district for 33 years. After a wide ranging career in industry, taught Energy and Sustainability Policy at Penn State; family owned a local small business; community volunteer, and served on West Rockhill Township's Conservation Committee.
1) Safeguarding democracy and election integrity, without which little else matters. My opponent signed a letter to US Congress in 2020 asking that acceptance of Pennsylvania electoral votes be disputed. 2) Political interference in our personal lives, first and foremost a woman's right to make her own decisions about her own body. I will oppose any legislation that curtails personal freedoms subjective grounds. 3) Reforming school funding is an urgent and overdue pressing issue impacting children, parents, teachers, property tax payers. 4) Protecting our water, air and climate, starting with special interest tax breaks subsidizing oil & gas companies billions yearly. In clear need of immediate reform, especially as LNG exports are pending.
I would support mailing a ballot to every registered voter for every election without the need to apply or renew. I support a simpler process for completing and submitting mail in ballots, including no privacy envelope, no date requirement, and more drop off locations. I would like for election results to be released on election day, by improvement in ballot processing or by starting the count earlier. I support the Governor's Election Security Task Force, while regretting its necessity. Expanded mail-in balloting is a reliable and constructive way to improve voter engagement and take pressure off in-person voting logistics and concerns. And finally, I would support expanded civic and voter education in our schools.
For starters, I would have voted for HB 1422 to modernize cyber charter funding and save millions for county schools. Incredibly, my opponent did not. The bill makes fair and practical adjustments to the amounts school systems are required to pay cyber schools, including special needs funding based on a student's needs, and ensuring that cyber schools follow the same rules as traditional public schools. The bill passed with bi-partisan support. I agree with the Court's Ruling that our school funding system must be reformed. I support shifting the bulk of the responsibility of school funding to the state and away from local property taxes, so that all schools are fairly and properly funded, regardless of zip code.
I agree with much of our current framework, including access to abortion medication and a 23-week window for abortion as a reproductive health option, followed by legal access if the health of the pregnant woman is in danger. I support changes to laws that delay a woman gaining access to a procedure for which she is lawfully entitled, including mandatory advanced pre-counseling and requiring parental consent or judicial review for minors. I support abortion coverage by healthcare plans, including Medicaid. I support a woman's right to make decisions for herself, in private, and have access to the healthcare she chooses.
County Bucks
Occupation State Representative
Education Central Bucks East, 1979 Johnson & Wales University
Qualifications State Representative
Campaign Website
The two top issues facing Pennsylvania families are the rising cost of living and the rising crime rates across our communities. We must work to address these key issues that directly impact the quality of life here in Upper Bucks County every single day.

I have consistently voted against tax hikes on working families and have supported measures to help reduce energy prices that drive up the cost of everything from filling your tank to running a small business.

I will always stand as a partner with our police and first responders, making sure they have the resources they need to keep our streets safe. They put their lives on the line each and every day to protect us, and they deserve someone fighting for them in Harrisburg,
Pennsylvanians deserve confidence in the outcome of our elections, and I am proud to have supported legislation to ensure that every eligible voter has their voice heard.

The Voting Rights Protection Act, which I voted for last session, would have required regular audits of our elections, as well as the implementation of Voter ID. It also laid out rules and regulations for county-run drop boxes and a more practical timeline for mail in voting.

This combination of security and access to early voting is the type of common-sense solution our election process needs. It was unfortunately vetoed by then-Governor Wolf, but I will continue to fight to make our elections more secure.
I have always been an advocate for quality education. I am proud to have been appointed to serve on the Commission on Education and Economic Competitiveness for this legislative session to investigate how we can best serve our students.

This commission is a bipartisan study on PA’s school system which will examine the shortcomings of the current system, the different approaches of leading school districts in the Commonwealth, and how we compare to other school systems around the world.

Preparing our students for a successful future in a highly skilled workforce starts with analyzing our current school system and taking proper steps to provide a world-class education in every corner of the state.
I believe that an issue as critical as this is best left in the hands of the people. That’s why I was proud to support putting a referendum on the ballot to begin addressing the question of abortion in Pennsylvania.

I am personally pro-life, but I do recognize the need to allow for some exceptions to protect the health and safety of the mother. I will always stand against allowing late-term abortions on-demand for no medical reason.