Teplitz
Teplitz

The 15th Senate Seat is going Democrat.

Rob Teplitz, a Democrat from Susquehanna Township in Dauphin County, defeated Republican candidate John McNally to secure a seat vacated by Jeffrey Piccola, who did not seek re-election.

Piccola, a Republican, has held the seat for two decades, and Teplitz said he believes he's the first Democrat to hold the 15th in 80 years. Teplitz won with 51 percent of the vote, 60,720 to 57,153.

McNally was able to take the York County vote, 64 percent to 35 percent, but it wasn't enough to make up for the Dauphin County deficit.

"It's everyone coming together because they believe we are offering something new and appropriate for the district," Teplitz, 41, said.

The 15th will represent part of Dauphin County and 17 York County municipalities, including the Dover, Wrightsville and Mount Wolf areas and Springettsbury Township.

McNally, a 49-year-old from Lower Paxton Township, had served as chairman of the Dauphin County Republican Committee, a position he resigned from in order to run for Senate.

Teplitz said he thinks his campaign was victorious in part because it was "based on issues and a positive message of bringing the entire district together."

The campaign was two years in the making, said Teplitz, the chief counsel and policy director for state Auditor General Jack Wagner.

"We knew this would be a challenge," said Teplitz, who narrowly defeated Alvin Q. Taylor in the primary. "It's very humbling when people you know and people you don't know believe in you enough to do this."