Rivera-Lytle kicks off 93rd District campaign with Gov. Wolf, Fetterman

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch
Governor Tom Wolf hugs Delma Rivera-Lytle, when arriving for Rivera-Lytle's campaign kick-off  for the 93rd State Legislative District, Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018.  John A. Pavoncello photo

Delma Rivera-Lytle just recently was approved by the Democratic state party to run for the state House's 93rd District, but Gov. Tom Wolf and other Democratic powerhouses are already throwing support at the campaign.

The Seven Valleys native was joined by Wolf, his running mate John Fetterman and more at her campaign kick-off event Tuesday, Sept. 18, at Goodwill Fire Co. in Jacobus.

At the event, four state House candidates were present along with the gubernatorial duo, offering support that Rivera-Lytle said "exceeded my own expectations."

Casting call: Rivera-Lytle first became interested in running for office after becoming "outraged" by comments from U.S. Rep. Scott Perry, R-Carroll Township, about Puerto Rico last year.

More:Rep. Perry defends Trump's Puerto Rico response on CNN

But the York native decided to put off running for a congressional seat because "timing is everything," and instead of entering the race then, she went to Puerto Rico to help family and friends in need.

However, the Democratic Party of York County put out a call Aug. 1 for a candidate to oppose Republican Mike Jones in the 93rd District after Meggan O’Rourke withdrew from the race for personal reasons.

More:York County Democrats look to fill 93rd District seat after O'Rourke withdraws

More:Delma Rivera-Lytle officially approved as candidate for 93rd District

Rivera-Lytle answered said call, and after a county party-selected committee of 39 individuals chose her as the nominee Aug. 13, the state party approved her candidacy just three days later.

"When this opportunity became available, I knew I had to run," Rivera-Lytle said. "I just felt like my own congressman didn't represent me."

Democrat Delma Rivera-Lytle, candidate for the 93rd State Legislative District holds a campaign kick-off at Goodwill Fire Company in Jacobus, Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018.  Governor Tom Wolf and Mayor John Fetterman, Democratic candidate for Lt. Governor, attended the kick-off in support of Rivera-Lytle. John A. Pavoncello photo

On the ballot: She's now officially on the ballot to run against Jones for the seat currently held by Rep. Kristin Phillips-Hill, R-York Township, who is in pursuit of the 28th District Senate seat Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner vacated.

Wolf, on the gubernatorial campaign trail with Fetterman, couldn't help but tout some of his accomplishments while in office, such as fighting the opioid crisis, investing in education and depositing money into the state's rainy day fund for the first time in more than a decade.

But the governor emphasized that "we're here for Delma" and focused on the possibility of seeing more Democrats in the House come November — with the help of Rivera-Lytle, who is running in a district that has remained red for more than 40 years.

"This is a really big deal," Wolf said. "This is our chance to take our democracy back, and we're the party to do it. Imagine what we can do if we had more than 81 members in the 203 member House of Representatives."

Platform: Rivera-Lytle is running on a platform fueled not onlyby her passion for Puerto Rican relief efforts but also her interests in education, infrastructure, employment, housing and health care, specifically the opioid crisis.

The wife of a Republican, the new candidate said her home life adds another aspect to the platform: a willingness to work across the aisle.

"I believe we have to work with people who think differently, even if they're from another party," Rivera-Lytle said. "Even though we both have differences of opinion, we can have civil dialogue. For me, that's very important."

She touts the theme in her new campaign slogan: "Making a difference together."

Governor Tom Wolf, Delma Rivera-Lytle, and Mayor John Fetterman, candidate for Lt. Governor, pose for a photo during a campaign kick-off event for Rivera-Lyle who is running for the 93rd Legislative District, Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018.  John A. Pavoncello photo