Pennsylvania State Representative Margo Davidson, (D-164) has had her election petitions called into question. What may have started as a clerical error on petitions to allow Representative Davidson on the ballot has now become a court hearing which will decide whether or not Davidson will be allow to run in the primary this April. Unnamed sources have said that the questionable petitions points to Davidson’s trustworthiness and reliability as not only a candidate and elected official.
Last month, Davidson had filed a writ of mandamus with the Pennsylvania Secretary of State Pedro Cortes requesting to be allowed to correct errors that were made on her election petitions. By themselves, the errors would not jeopardize her position on the April 26 primary but state elections attorney Kathleen Kotula denied the request and opted to pass the case along for the courts to make the final decision. The problem with Davidson’s petitions are related to how the petitions were notarized.
According to reports, Davidson held petition parties at her office where she invited her constituents to come and sign election petitions. Carolyn C. Collins, who is the former chief of staff for Davidson, incorrectly dated the petitions. Davidson’s legal brief states that 24 of the roughly 70 pages of the affidavits, marking them as January, instead of February and that in addition to those discrepancies, the legal brief identifies one page having “Delaware” written instead of the requested date. Representative Davidson is asking the court to allow her campaign (the notary) to correct the errors to allow her name to stay on the ballot in April.
Davidson claims that “clerical error of the notary is amendable under case law, according to my attorney.” The hearing to debate whether Davidson may correct the petitions should be decided by March 15th. For Davidson, it will be a decision that will either allow her to stay on the ballot for the Pennsylvania primary in April or it will remove her completely.