DePasquale
DePasquale

A special election next year will determine who fills the heavily Democratic 95th House District, which will be left vacant when state Rep. Eugene DePasquale, D-York City takes statewide office.

DePasquale said he'll resign from the House in January to be sworn in as auditor general. He won both elections Tuesday, but can't serve in both positions.

The York County Democratic Party isn't ready to give names, but party officials and DePasquale have preliminarily discussed options with community members who would "be a good fit" and would be willing to serve in the position, said Chad Baker, director of communications and marketing.

The executive committee of the York County Democrats is likely to discuss possible candidates during a meeting Tuesday. It will whittle the list to one and submit it to the state's Democratic committee for approval, he said.

Republicans will also propose a candidate, and both candidates will appear on the ballot for a special election.

The date for the contest will be set by Speaker of the House Sam Smith, and Democrats are hoping it will be held the same day as the April 2013 primary so there's no extra cost for voting machines and other election provisions, Baker said.

The seat will be empty from the time DePasquale resigns until after the special election.

"Knowing he's not going to retain the seat, we want to try to get someone in as soon as possible. ... Technically, we will not have a representative in that area (from January until April)," Baker said.

The GOP: Bob Wilson, who heads the York County Republican Party, said a few Republicans have expressed interest in the 95th.

The process is different for Republicans. Committee members in the 95th vote for the candidate, and the candidate is then placed on the ballot for the special election, he said. A state committee isn't involved.

DePasquale will be the first statewide officeholder from York County since Gov. George Leader served in the 1950s.

He will succeed Jack Wagner, who's stepping down after serving the maximum two consecutive terms allowed by law.

- Reach Christina Kauffman at ckauffman@yorkdispatch.com.