November 6, 2017
Extremely Important Election Tuesday
Tuesday, November 7th voters will decide on a Supreme Court Justice who will serve ten years and whether to retain two others for ten more years. They will also vote to fill four Superior Court judicial openings and two Commonwealth Court openings. Each of these terms are also ten years in length.
How important are these judicial races? Here are two recent examples:
For a considerable period of time, Pennsylvania courts held that Sexual Offender Registration and Notification Act (“SORNA) registration requirements were civil, rather than punitive in nature. However, this all changed in July with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Commonwealth v. Muniz, 164 A.3d 1189 (Pa. 2017). In Muniz, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court held that the SORNA registration requirements were punitive and not civil. The decision was 5 to 1. All the Democrats decided to declare sections of PA’s Sexual Offender Registry unconstitutional. Only Chief Justice Thomas Saylor dissented. (Justice Sallie Mundy did not participate in the consideration or decision of this case.)
Just days ago the Pennsylvania Superior Court decided the case of Commonwealth v. Butler, finding that Pennsylvania’s system of classifying certain sex offenders as Sexually Violent Predators (SVP) is unconstitutional. This decision could impact thousands of convicted sex offenders throughout Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Superior Court did not limit its ruling to Butler’s specific case. Instead, it halted all future SVP hearings.
But it’s not just judges that we’ll be voting on, it’ll also be local races like Court of Common Pleas, county councils, borough council, township supervisors, mayors, district attorney, sheriff, coroner, some row offices and school board. All these races will impact every single Pennsylvanian one way or the other.
2.) Check with your elderly family members, friends and neighbors to make sure they have a ride to their polling place. Help them become an informed voter and share the information you have on the candidates.
3.) Know your Supreme, Superior and Commonwealth Court judicial candidates: The AFA of PA judicial voter guide can be found here
Planned Parenthood’s voter guide covers not only the judicial races, but some county councils and school boards! Check out to see which candidates are okay with killing babies in the womb!!
Click here for the Firearm Owners Against Crime voter guide to see which candidates support the Second Amendment. Click on the map at the bottom of the linked page to get the voter guide for your area.