Leanne Krueger-Braneky Wins 161st Race

Leanne Krueger-Braneky Wins 161st RaceDemocrat Leanne Krueger-Braneky has won today’s (Aug. 4) election for the  vacant 161st District Seat in the Pennsylvania House.

According to unofficial numbers from Delaware County, Mrs. Krueger-Braneky has received 4,791 votes, while Paul Mullen, who for some unfathomable reason had been tapped by the GOP, got 4,268 votes. Mullen is the county’s AFL-CIO president and had been supporting Democrats until this election.

There were 988 write-in votes cast most of them likely going to Republican write-in candidate Lisa Esler.

Mrs. Krueger-Braneky beat Mullen by more than 1,000 votes in Swarthmore.

The seat was vacated April 30 by Joe Hackett who easily beat Mrs. Krueger-Braneky last fall 12,612 to 9,916. Hackett said he wanted to return to law enforcement.

Why the county Republicans would pick a candidate like Mullen who they should have known would absolutely outrage a substantial portion of the base is certainly a mystery. Why they would pick a man unwilling to face questions from the public is beyond comprehension.

More significantly, with a pension bomb looming and property taxes rising, they should have understood that it was necessary to take the appropriate stands on issues such as banning teacher strikes and ending prevailing wage rather than picking a candidate that would oppose reforms.

Hopefully, they learned a lesson. We are not sure.

Now, for some secrets from the campaign.

Lisa Esler did not want to run. When she heard Mullen was seeking the candidacy she made her own submission with the expectation that the GOP would pick a compromise candidate. If the party leadership, picked the toil-in-the-vineyard hack she expected them too — rather than a supporter of extreme liberal candidates and an opponent of the fiscal reforms  that she saw as a school director as being desperately needed — she would have shrugged her shoulders and maybe even worked to get him elected.

Further, she is certain the endorsement meeting May 28 was fixed despite the protestations of County GOP Chairman Andy Reilly. A Facebook posting  was made an hour before the meeting declaring  Mullen to be the nominee. No amount of spinning can change that.

Neither, can any amount of spinning change the reality that Mullen avoided explaining where he stood on anything.

Anyway, kudos Lisa Esler. You can only be proud of yourself.

And congratulations Leanne Krueger-Braneky

Leanne Krueger-Braneky Wins 161st Race

19 thoughts on “Leanne Krueger-Braneky Wins 161st Race”

  1. This is what happens when purists attempt to undermine a high-R registration; the incumbency will now be more easily defended.

    1. Sorry to disagree, Dr Bob, but this is what happens when spineless, unprincipled RINOs care only about feeding at the trough and care nothing for the actual voters/citizens/ taxpayers. Purists? We are principled, although when compared to the unprincipled careerists feeding off of the taxpayer, we probably do look like purists.

  2. You did great Lisa!
    I am so proud of you. You practically single handedly handed a union goon his walking papers and gave an explicit warning to the Delco GOP.
    How would you feel about Mike Puppio as head of the Delco Republican Party.
    Are you paying attention Andy?

  3. The key-point is that the GOP-leadership felt that a union-oriented candidate would be best equipped to beat a Dem because of the heavy union-membership in the district; such is life!

    1. And so much for beating the Dem.

      There is nothing wrong with treating unions with respect. There is everything wrong with treating the rest of your constituency as garbage.

  4. GOP leaders must stop taking GOP voters for granted. The lesson of tonight’s election results is this: Party endorsements and monkey business have no place in special elections and primaries. Stay out. Individual officials can and should get involved, representing themselves only. Anything else antagonizes and alienates the very voter base the GOP needs. Lesson learned? Well, isn’t this the umpteenth election like this in the past few years? You’d think GOP officials would have learned by now, but obviously they haven’t. They must not be leader material. Congrats, Lisa, I was honored to work for you.

    1. Don’t disagree with these sentiments but the fundamental decision was predicated on awareness of an electorate that was saturated with union members.

      1. Bob, I worked a poll for Lisa for 13 hours yesterday. About 450 votes were cast there during the day, and I approached and or spoke to most of the voters coming in. Union membership was not the defining reason. Ethnic pride, pride in the local boy done good, fear that Lisa Esler was actually a liberal democrat (fears planted by GOP calls and mailers) trying to undermine a Republican, etc were all reasons I heard yesterday from voters who said they were voting for Mullen. One guy, a very cool off duty police officer whose helpful answers were impressive, was particularly representative of the neighborhood: “I know who Paul Mullen is. Is he perfect? Heck no. I’m very conservative. But who is Lisa Esler?” Again, the phony union scarecrow turns out to really be full of straw.

        1. Was there ANY foundation for the false charge?

          If not, your interviewee was excessively obtuse.

          There were so few voting sites that one would think that the educational effort could have been maximized accordingly.

        2. Was there ANY foundation for the false charge?

          If not, your interviewee was excessively obtuse.

          There were so few voting sites that one would think that the educational effort could have been maximized accordingly.

          1. I don’t think there’s any basis for the assertion that Lisa is a liberal stalking horse, certainly no evidence for it or of it. But it’s fear of it that guided people. The voters largely went with what and who they knew over what they didn’t know. It’s basic politics. Pretty tough to overcome.

          2. Every problem presents an opportunity; primary season is a few months away and, noting your experience (and how the losing Democrat last year, won this year), it would seem plausible to test the degree of unionism within the GOP by recycling next year!

          3. Absolutely! I’d like to see Lisa Esler be the Republican challenger to Leanne Kranky-Banker, who I met at our poll yesterday and was impressed by. Leanne vs Lisa is a true contest of ideas by two great women leaders and that contest would give the voters genuine policy choices, not the hidden agenda, mixed messages, and murky loyalties of the recently vanquished GOP insider nominee. I’d come right back to Delaware County to volunteer for Lisa again.

  5. I can see wanting to find a candidate who would appeal to union members, but Mullen? Was he the best and only possible candidate for whom union members would vote?

      1. Political bosses trying to ram a defective candidate down the throats of GOP voters is a broken model, and they don’t really care about polling. They’d rather go down with their defective candidate than allow the actual voters to choose their own candidate.

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