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A Changing of the Guard: Philadelphia State House Delegation’s New Look

By David L. Hyman

Virtually every poll confirms the public’s lack of confidence in all levels of government.  The frustration stems in large part from the perception that “career politicians” have lost touch with their constituents’ concerns after decades in office.  What the average Philadelphia voter may not know is that there has been a dramatic change in the composition of our State House Delegation.  Over the past five years due to retirements and election day surprises, the Philadelphia delegation is young, energized and motivated.  These emerging leaders from all sections of the City have begun to assert their influence on Philadelphia’s behalf in Harrisburg.  From Jordan Harris in Southwest Philadelphia to Kevin Boyle in the Northeast to Stephen Kinsey in the Northwest, new and younger faces are representing the majority of the 26 Legislative Districts which encompass our City’s neighborhoods.  That trend has continued this year through the 2016 Special Election Cycle and Primaries.  Attorneys Donna Bullock and Joanna McClinton are recent additions and they will be joined by Attorney Jared Solomon (who has no Republican opponent in the Fall).   The youth movement is not limited to the Democrats.  One of Philadelphia’s two Republican representatives is Martina White who joined the legislature in 2015 and hasn’t yet turned 30 years old.  The “New Team” may lack experience but they are talented and eager.  I’m looking forward to big results for our City and School District.  On the other side of the Capital, Philadelphia will have one new State Senator among the seven Districts.  Sharif Street will be the new Senator in the 3rd District stepping into the shoes of retiring Senator Shirley Kitchen.