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Thompson, Menges advance to general election for Court of Common Pleas judge

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch

York City-based attorneys Sandra Thompson and Matt Menges will face off in the November municipal election for an open spot on the York County Court of Common Pleas.

With 99% of precincts reporting, Thompson won the Tuesday Democratic primary with 51.6% of the votes. Menges won over Republicans with 45.9% of the votes. 

York County Court of Common Pleas candidate Sandra Thompson, left, talks with York County Commission candidate Judith Higgins during a watch party at Rockfish Public House in York City Tuesday, May 21, 2019. Bill Kalina photo

"I'm thankful to still have confidence in those who elect Democratic candidates," Thompson said. "What needs to be done for the general (election) is to broaden the base of knowledge of who I am throughout the York community and do a better job of educating people when there's an election."

Menges didn't respond to inquiries for comment by deadline.

More:York County Bar Association biased against Christian conservatives, candidate says

The results go against the grain set by a survey of nearly 500 attorneys conducted by the York County Bar Association last month, which showed about 81% of respondents found the third candidate, Red Lion-based attorney Jonelle Eshbach, at least "qualified."

Matt Menges, right, handily defeated Republican challengers Sandra Thompson and Jonelle Harter Eshbach in the 19th District Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, Tuesday, May 21, 2019.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Menges, of Trinity Law, only received a 22.5% rating of at least “qualified," which he attributed to his conservative Christian values and the fact that he wasn't close with bar association members.

Thompson, who is the NAACP president and works at her own private law firm, was rated at least “qualified” by 18.8% of respondents. She also pointed to a lack of name recognition among the association's members.

But now she's one of two women from the African American golfing group The Sisters in the Fairway to win a contested primary election Tuesday. Sandra Harrison, the second woman, won the primary race for prothonotary.

The group of five made national headlines last year after former County Commissioner Steve Chronister — who lost his bid to get back on the board Tuesday — called the police on the group twice and was accused of discrimination.

The municipal election will take place Nov. 5. The winner will replace former York County Judge John S. Kennedy, who retired in 2017.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.