HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA) -- This region has a new state representative, and the election of Democrat Lindsay Powell means the Democrats will continue to control the state House of Representatives.
KDKA-TV political editor Jon Delano has more on what that means.
A tie in the state House -- 101 Republicans and 101 Democrats -- was broken Tuesday when voters in Shaler, Etna, Reserve, Millvale and parts ofa 30-point win over Republican Erin Connolly Autenreith.
"I'm so grateful to the voters of the 21st District for having their trust and believing in a vision that we can have a kinder, more justice-focused government for all of us," said Powell on Wednesday.
As they have for the last six months, Powell's election means Democrats will continue to control the state House until the end of 2024, assuming no further vacancies.
So what does that mean for this area?
"We ran on a campaign of ensuring that folks had access to dignified safe housing, that we had a strong equitable local economy that worked for every single one of us, that we had community assets that we could enjoy -- beautiful parks, and playgrounds, and green spaces, safe infrastructure. And that message resonated with the voters," said Powell.
Powell says Democratic control of the state House is essential on issues like raising the minimum wage and protecting reproductive freedom.
"To join as this representative able to break this tie means a tremendous deal," the Lawrenceville Democrat added.
Powell says she's taken calls already from Gov. Josh Shapiro, House Speaker Joanna McClinton, and even a presidential aide in the White House, but she says the best call was from her mother.
"I got a call from my mother this morning. That put me in tears."
Delano: "When exactly will you be sworn in?"
Powell: "Oh my goodness, I don't know yet. But I've been joking I've got a bag ready by the door whenever Speaker McClinton calls me. But it depends on when the election is certified, so we're hoping within the next week or two that I will be able to be sworn in in Harrisburg officially."
Representative-elect Powell says, as the most junior member, she's happy to take the smallest office in the House, although having preserved their majority, her Democratic colleagues may treat her just a little bit better than that.
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