Pennsylvania Perspective Special Edition: 2023 Pennsylvania Election Recap

November 8, 2023

Information current as of 10:35 a.m. on November 8, 2023

On Tuesday, November 7, several important races helped determine the future political direction of several cities, counties, and the Commonwealth. Highlights include historic wins for Democrats Cherelle Parker in Philadelphia and Sara Innamorato in Allegheny County, who will become the first women to hold the positions of mayor and county executive, respectively; a win that extends Democrats’ majority on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court; key executive, council, and commissioner wins that have allowed Democrats to maintain control of Philadelphia and the collar counties of Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, and Delaware; and wins for Democratic candidates in other offices in the Philadelphia suburbs, which are being closely monitored as potential bellwethers for the 2024 presidential race. Below is a brief summary of the election results.

Statewide Races

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

In a race to replace the late Justice Max Baer, a high-profile campaign which was largely seen as a referendum on reproductive rights in the state, Democrat Daniel McCaffery has defeated Republican Carolyn Carluccio, extending Democrats’ majority.

Pennsylvania Superior Court

Democrat Jill Beck has won election to Pennsylvania’s Superior Court. While the race for the second seat remains too close to call, Democrat Timika Lane currently leads Republicans Maria Battista and Harry Smail.

Commonwealth Court Judge

Democrat Matt Wolf has defeated Republican Megan Martin in the race for Commonwealth Court Judge.


County Races

Allegheny County

  • County Executive: Progressive Democrat and former state representative Sara Innamorato has defeated Republican Joe Rockey in the highly anticipated race for Allegheny County executive.
  • District Attorney: Incumbent Stephen Zappala, who switched his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican in order to run following a primary defeat by Democratic nominee Matt Dugan, won re-election as a write-in.
  • Controller: Democrat Corey O’Connor, who was appointed controller in the summer of 2022 after Chelsa Wagner stepped down to become a Common Pleas Court Judge, has won a full term by defeating Republican Bob Howard.
  • Treasurer: Democrat Erica Rocchi Brusselars will replace longtime Treasurer John Weinstein after defeating Republican Herb Ohliger.
  • County Council At-Large: Democrat Bethany Hallam and Republican Sam DeMarco won re-election to council’s two at-large seats.
  • County Council District 2: Incumbent Republican Suzanne Filiaggi won re-election over Democrat Todd Hamer.
  • County Council District 5: Democrat Dan Grzybek will replace outgoing Council Representative Tom Duerr after defeating Republican Mike Embrescia.
  • County Council District 6: Incumbent Democrat John Palmiere successfully fended off Republican challenger Sean McGrath.
  • County Council District 10: Incumbent Democrat DeWitt Walton successfully fended off challenge from DSA-backed Independent Carl Redwood.
  • County Council District 11: Incumbent Democrat Paul Klein won a three-way race against Republican Eileen Lo Cunningham and independent Robert McCune.
  • County Council District 13: Democrat David Bonaroti defeated Independent Sam Schmidt, who had been seen as a spiritual successor to current Council Representative Liv Bennett.

Bucks County Commissioner

The incumbent Democratic County Commissioners Bob Harvie and Diane Ellis-Marseglia have won their bids for re-election, keeping the three-member body in Democratic control. Republican incumbent Gene DiGirolamo is leading Republican challenger Pamela Van Blunk for the last seat, which is reserved for a member of a minority party.

Dauphin County Commissioner

Democrats appear to have won control of the commissioner board in Dauphin County, with Democratic newcomer Justin Douglas winning the final spot on the three-member body over Republican Chad Saylor. He will join Democratic incumbent George Hartwick III and Republican Mike Pries.

Delaware County District Attorney

Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer has declared victory over Republican challenger Beth Stefanide-Miscichowski, a former prosecutor in his office.

Montgomery County Commissioner

Democrats Neil Makhika and Jamila Winder have declared victory in the Montgomery County Commissioners race, becoming the first Black woman and the first Asian American person, respectively, to be elected to the three-member body and keeping Democrats the majority. The third seat, which is reserved for a member of a minority party, has been won by Republican Thomas DiBello.


Municipal Races


  • Mayor: Democrat Cherelle Parker has made history as the first Black woman to be elected mayor of Philadelphia after defeating Republican David Oh.
  • City Council At-Large: Incumbent Democratic Councilmembers At-Large Isaiah Thomas, Katherine Gilmore Richardson, and Jim Harrity have all won re-election, while Democratic newcomers Nina Ahmad and Rue Landau have made history being elected City Council’s first South Asian American member and first openly LGBTQ member, respectively. Incumbent Working Families Party (WFP) Councilmember Kendra Brooks has also won re-election, and her running mate Nicolas O’Rourke will join her after defeating Republicans Jim Hasher and Drew Murray. It will be the first time in modern history that the two seats reserved for members of a minority party are not held by Republicans.
  • City Council District 3: Incumbent Democratic Councilmember Jamie Gauthier has successfully fended off a challenge from Jabari Jones of the “West is Best” Party.
  • City Council District 5: Democrat Jeffery “Jay” Young will be replacing longtime District 5 Councilmember and current Council President Darrell Clarke after winning an uncontested race. He will be the only new district Council member inaugurated in January 2024.
  • City Council District 10: Incumbent Republican Councilmember Brian O’Neill has defeated Democratic challenger Gary Masino to retain control of the Far Northeast seat he has held for more than four decades.
  • City Commissioners: Democrats Lisa Deeley and Omar Sabir have won re-election, while Republican Seth Bluestein, who was appointed in 2022 to replace his mentor and current Pennsylvania Secretary of State Al Schmidt, has won a full term.
  • City Controller: Democrat Christy Brady, who was appointed in November 2022 as acting controller upon the resignation of former Controller Rebecca Rhynhart ahead of her mayoral run, has defeated Republican Aaron Bashir.
  • Register of Wills: Democrat John Sabatina, who defeated one-term incumbent Tracey Gordon during the May primary election, has bested Republican Linwood Holland.
  • Sheriff: Incumbent Democrat Rochelle Bilal has defeated Republican Mark Lavelle.


  • Controller: Rachael Heisler won her uncontested race for city controller.
  • City Council District 3: Democrat Bob Charland will succeed current Democratic Councilmember and former Council President Bruce Kraus after winning his uncontested election.
  • City Council District 5: Democrat Barb Warwick has won her first full term after winning a special election last year to fill the seat vacated by Corey O’Connor.
  • City Council District 9: Khari Mosely will succeed four-term Councilman Ricky Burgess after winning an uncontested election.

Central Bucks School Board

Democrats claimed a sweep of the school board races in Central Bucks, a community within a swing county, wresting control from Republicans in an increasingly polarized political era. Voters unseated current Republican board President Dana Hunter in favor of Democrat Heather Reynolds, while  Region 1 incumbent Democrat Karen Smith bested challenger Republican Dr. Steve Mass. Newcomer Democrats Dana Foley (Region 3), Rick Haring (Region 6), and Susan Gibson (Region 8) won against Republicans Glenn Schloeffel, Aarati Martino, and Tony Arjona, respectively.

Chester Mayor

Democrat Stefan Roots has defeated Independent Anita Littleton to become the next mayor for the bankrupt city of Chester. He will succeed incumbent Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland.

Pennridge School Board

Democrats have claimed all five open seats on the Pennridge School Board, winning control from the current 8-1 Republican majority. If the current unofficial results hold, incumbent Democrat Ron Wurz will be joined by Democratic newcomers Chris Kaufman, Bradley Merkl-Gump, Leah Foster Rash and Carolyn Sciarrino, while incumbent Republican Jonathan Russell will be joined by Republican newcomers Joshua Hogan and Bob Sellers.

Upper Darby Mayor

Democrat Ed Brown has been elected as Upper Darby’s first Black mayor, defeating Republican Brian Burke.


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