23rd Ward Republican enters 177th district primary

Elijah Myers is the second Republican to throw his hat in the race.

Elijah Myers, sergeant at arms for the 23rd Ward Republican Committee, is seeking the GOP nomination in the 177th Legislative District.

The other Republican candidate is Patty-Pat Kozlowski, a community activist and former City Council aide and city parks director.

Myers, a Colorado native who has lived in Philadelphia for 17 years, is an artist and lifelong Republican. He supports more block captains and beautification projects, Town Watch and special-needs programs in schools.

Myers said he is not offended by safety glass at stores, believes the beverage tax is unfair, supports the police department and opposes Philadelphia’s sanctuary city status and safe injection sites for drug addicts.

Republican Rep. John Taylor is not seeking another term.

There are six Democratic candidates: Maggie Borski, a law student and daughter of former congressman Bob Borski; Iraq War veteran Sean Patrick Wayland; Joe Hohenstein, an immigration lawyer who took 45 percent of the vote against Taylor two years ago; union plasterer Sean Kilkenny; community activist Dan Martino; and former City Council aide Sean K. McMonagle.

The primary is May 15.

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Maggie Borski hosted an open house on Friday night at her new campaign office at 2653 Orthodox St. in Bridesburg.

Borski and the other candidates must file at least 300 valid nominating petitions by the March 6 deadline to gain a place on the ballot. She hopes to file early.

“Our goal is 2,000,” she said.

As Borski and her volunteers collect signatures, they are engaging voters in campaign conversation.

“We’re trying to treat it like a canvassing opportunity,” she said.

Borski, a first-time candidate who entered the race in December, will celebrate her 25th birthday on Friday night with a $25 fundraiser at the Harmonia Club in Bridesburg.

Next Tuesday, former Mayor and Gov. Ed Rendell will host a fundraising luncheon for Borski at a Center City law firm.

Borski, who will graduate from Temple School of Law two days after the primary, likes where her campaign stands.

“I’m very confident with our game plan,” she said.

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Joe Hohenstein has outraised his fellow Democrats in the 177th district, according to campaign finance disclosure reports filed with the Department of State on Jan. 31.

Hohenstein, who recently opened a campaign office in Frankford, raised just under $65,000 from more than 140 individual donors.

“I am humbled by the outpouring of support our campaign has received since we began our journey this past summer. Ever since I began running for state representative, I have endeavored for this campaign to be driven by the very people I am excited to serve, and the number of individuals fueling this campaign is a testament to this grassroots energy. I am running for state representative because I want to give back to the neighborhoods I grew up in,” he said.

“I don’t have a famous last name or large organizations with deep pockets to fund my campaign. But what I do have is the power of our neighbors and families determined to strengthen our district’s communities. As Philadelphians, we take pride in being the underdog, and my campaign best embodies that resilience. Together, we will make sure the 177th has an experienced advocate who will stand up to fight for working families, seniors and all residents of the community my family has called home for five generations.”

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Abu Edwards will challenge state Rep. Jason Dawkins (D-179th dist.) in the May 15 primary.

Edwards, who grew up in Olney, earned a political science degree in 2012 from Wilberforce University (Ohio). He is co-founder of Millennials in Action Political Action Committee and president of the Friends of Greater Olney Library.

Through Millennials in Action, he helped the successful 2017 campaigns of Deborah Canty and Vikki Kristiansson for Common Pleas Court, Rebecca Rhynhart for city controller and Carolyn Nichols for Superior Court.

Among the campaigns he’s worked on were Katie McGinty for governor and

David Wecht for Supreme Court.

Edwards will focus his campaign on quality education, safe and affordable housing and social justice reform.

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Former state Rep. Gordon Denlinger and Otto Voit, who ran for state treasurer in 2016, have dropped out of the Republican primary for lieutenant governor.

“I want to congratulate Jeff Bartos on winning the endorsement of the Republican State Committee. I am also grateful to both Jeff and Otto Voit for running hard-fought, spirited campaigns that were clean and focused on the issues. If three candidates can run against each other in the manner we did, there is hope for politics,” Denlinger said.

Bartos is running with the backing of state Sen. Scott Wagner, the endorsed Republican candidate for governor.

Other GOP candidates for lieutenant governor are longtime conservative activist Peg Luksik and Commissioners Joe Gale of Montgomery County and Diana Irey Vaughan of Washington County.

Vaughn is backed by Paul Mango, a candidate for governor. ••