Judy DiFilippo Makes Her Decision Official — She Will Run for State Representative

It is now official.  Many of us knew that when Judy DiFilippo decided not to seek re-election to Tredyffrin Township’s Board of Supervisors, she had already begun to consider a run for the State House.  Now it is official — Judy is in the race for State Representative from the 157th district.  Stay tuned as the Primary campaign season begins to unfold; I think it’s going to be an interesting ride!

Below is the official press release announcing Judy’s bid for the state house which appears in today’s Main Line Suburban Life newspaper.

    DiFilippo sets sights on state house

Published: Wednesday, January 20, 2010

By Blair Meadowcroft

Shortly after stepping down from her position on the Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors, a position held for the past 20 years, Judy DiFilippo has announced her candidacy for state representative in the 157th Legislative District. DiFilippo decided to run in the Republican primary for state representative after being asked, and so far the response to her candidacy has been positive.

“There is a lot of support out there, which is nice,” said DiFilippo. “The experience so far has been very good.”

With a background rich in diversity, DiFilippo feels her various experiences have prepared her for the position of state representative. “It’s important to have someone who understands local government because some of the decisions they make up in Harrisburg really impact local government and school districts,” said DiFilippo. “My experience is at the township level as well as the county level through working with the Planning Commission. I have also worked with various supervisors in municipalities from the smallest township to the larger ones.”

A life-long volunteer, the list of organizations and committees that DiFilippo has given her time to, as well as the various positions she has held, is endless. Perhaps one of the experiences on DiFilippo’s résumé that will best prepare her for this new position was her time spent working for former 157th District State Rep. Carole Rubley for more than two years starting in 2003. “Through that experience I have been able to establish a relationship with some of the other state legislators, which will prove useful,” said DiFilippo.

 Although just at the beginning of her campaign, DiFilippo continues to make phone calls, a task she began before the holidays. Additionally she is beginning to put her committee together. If elected, she plans to address the “really tough issues” in Harrisburg.

According to DiFilippo, based on talking to people, most of the concerns being expressed revolve around the economy and health care as well as local issues with traffic. “I can take these concerns to Harrisburg and try to find ways to resolve some of them,” said DiFilippo. “So far people are very willing to listen to me as well as share their concerns with me, which I appreciate. I need them to understand that I am willing to take those concerns to Harrisburg to work on ways to address them.”

With the support and encouragement of her family, friends, neighbors and colleagues in the 157th District, DiFilippo said she is excited at the prospect of continuing her public service at the state level.

“I am willing to commit to this position full-time,” said DiFilippo. “I want to bring my knowledge of the community and local government to Harrisburg and work on the issues that we all care about – the economy, jobs and quality-of-life issues like the environment, education, health care, rising energy costs and traffic.” DiFilippo’s plans for the upcoming months are to continue to meet with the voters in the 157th District.

 “I look forward to meeting with the voters to discuss our common concerns and to earn their support for my election,” said DiFilippo.

21 Responses

  1. I was glad to hear that Judy has decided to run but she will have to beat Warren Kampf in May. As Republicans, Judy and Warren represent opposite ends of the spectrum. For Independents, Judy is far more moderate and therefore much more appealing. Is she going to still run if she is not endorsed by the Republican Committee? The last time when she ran against Guy Cirachocci (sp) she was not endorsed and dropped out of the race. Is she going to do the same thing this time? If Warren is endorsed by the TTRC what is that going to say for her chances of winning the primary? Do you think that she can beat Warren?

    • >>Judy is far more moderate

      Do you really think Kampf is more moderate? And by that, you mean the question of choice…right? I don’t think Warren has any core beliefs that couldn’t be compromised by a perceived political advantage/

      Look…Warren and I worked together on the Bush/Cheney 04 campaign as local coordinators. He was tapped to be the local chair of the social conservatives group of the campaign. I asked him what he thought the term “social conservative” meant. He told me he didn’t know..but that is what they asked him to do.

      Doesn’t sound like somebody with core beliefs to me. I have never known Kampf to take an an official position on abortion – UNTIL….he declared for the 157th. At that point, he made a political calculation that he needed to be on the “right” side of that issue.

      Then…there is the subject of his chair C.T. Alexander. As we all now know, CT lied about his activities re: support of the fire companies. In spite of that, CT is still part of the Kampf Campaign. To one degree, its laudable that Kampf would stick by CT. However, that also means that Kampf is OK with a proven liar as his chair. And to one degree or another, it cast serious doubt on Kampf’s credibility and fitness to hold office – much less be our state rep. We are not even at the stage where petitions can be circulated and my guess is, Kampf is already thinking about his next office.

      When it comes to character, I don’t think there is much of a contest here. The choice is clear….

  2. A very positive news day, today!

    Obama hears the wake up call from Massachusetts, and seems to be looking towards a healthcare bill that might actually be helpful and not break the bank.

    Paul Drucker (whatever his motives, John!) is moving on one of the most egregious political issues in the state.

    And Judy throws her hat into the Republican ring. The only problem with that is that she lists the issues as economy, healthcare and traffic. Maybe if she gets out front with some real ideas on perhaps the biggest single issue that Harrisburg can affect – EDUCATION – then party endorsements might be less important. And she could show an truly independent spirit by endorsing Andy Dinniman’s ideas for school governance reform.

    Hope springs eternal!

    • Well…Traffic to the extent that mass transit in the form of light rail, etc needs to be expanded. Perhaps that is what Judy was referring to.

      As for Paul and the Gerry Mandering issue – don’t get me wrong – I like Paul. But the deal is – he is a first term rep. This is all election fodder. Paul doesn’t have the juice to see something like this through the house. and even if he did, it would still have to get through the PA senate.

      Here’s a thought..what’s up with the Paoli Train Station development. That is one thing many of us have a stake in. What’s the deal on that?

      By the way Paul’s motives are of one thing…to get re-elected. That’s it. Nothing wrong with that.

      I simply call it out for what it is.

    • Ray
      I guess I’m out of touch with Harrisburg — so I just went to the Dinniman website and didn’t see a word about educaiton reform. Can you update?

      • See Pattye’s December 30th post:
        Senator Dinniman Proposes Taking the ‘Politics’ Out of All Pennsylvania School Boards

        • Also, I did see the actual press release announcing Judy’s candidacy, which included the statement:

          “Putting people first, I will work on the issues that we all care about – the economy, jobs, and quality of life issues like the environment, education, rising energy costs, and traffic. We need to find ways to reduce the cost of government. Perhaps now is the time to reduce the size of our state legislature.”

          I was pleased to see education included, and I’m looking forward to specifics as the campaign unfolds.

        • Here is the link for the posting, Senator Dinniman Proposes Taking the ‘Politics’ Out of All Pennsylvania School Boards:

          • Thanks. I had missed that post — but I find it odd that it is no where on Dinniman’s website including under “his legislation.” The wheels of government don’t turn as we expect?
            Having read the post now, I don’t see the point– 250 signatures is not much to get on the ballot, but getting those signatures is not exactly a “vetting”process. While it may not be what many like, the local parties do some vetting of candidates for primaries — and you do not need the local endorsement to get on the ballot. You also “cross file” for school board elections to be sure that voters who are registered in either party can vote for you in the primary. Endorsement has never meant much in school board elections locally, but perhaps it’s different elsewhere. I may be naturally suspicious, but somehow I think that the PSEA is behind this idea, so I need to think about the longer term implications of a list of names where we “check two.” come November.

  3. John P.

    Didn’t C.T. at one time say Kampf couldn’t win or that he wasn’t the “right fit” for the district? And wasn’t Carole’s district one of those changed, but she managed to win anyway?

    • Yes… Although right fit was not the phrase…

      In an interview CT did with me, he stated very clearly, that he thought Warren was “too conservative” to win the 157th. Clearly, that was in reference to Phoenixville. Personally, I think it is a bunch of BS. First off, Kampf is not a true conservative. To be a true conservative or a true liberal/progressive means that you have core beliefs and that your internal compass has a true north. So in that regard, CT may have been expressing some other concerns re: Kampf. Given the events of the past few months (St. David’s, fire funding, etc.) – I am sure Paul Drucker’s people have been taking copious notes on ways to attack Kampf. At a very real level, Kampf, as a member of the TTRC, has brought dishonor and shame to the institution. On that basis alone, he shouldn’t be the endorsed candidate because if the TTRC does endorse him, it can be said that the TTRC embraces the very things Kampf and company have done..

      In terms of Carole, when you serve for 17 years, you really become entrenched. Carole did not nor does she have right wing leanings. She was very likable and what you saw is what you got. She was not a cut throat politician. That was not Carole. And for the most part, people respect those who chose to be themselves. That is another failing of Kampf. When you get down to it, who is he? We all see a facade with him. This all gets back to his core beliefs and his value system.

      Consider this..

      On one hand, Kampf voted to approve the 2010 budget – which included an acknowledge that street light and related items were to be paid through the sewer utility fund. On the other hand, when it came time to vote on the fee, he structured the vote for Judy to to go first – knowing that she would vote yes to increase the fee. He knew the increase would pass – as it should have since there are expenses that have to be funded. Nonetheless, he voted no – knowign that it would pass. Why? So that he can say that he voted no for a sewer fee increase.

      That in a nutshell is what Warren Kampf is all about.. As an elected official, he is logically inconsistent and has no core beliefs other than what appears to be immediately convenient for the next elected office. And in that pursuit, he would throw us all under the bus if it meant gaining a political advantage. Simply stated, he is a bad guy…

      If your familiar with Animal House, Warren Kampf most approximates Doug Neidermeyer.

  4. Well, team, committee people know there is a third choice: Kendrick Buckwalter of Phoenixville.

    He is a mainstream conservative with 15 years of municipal government under his belt. He is also a small businessman, running Buckwalter Framing for many years, which for a couple decades was located in Tredyffrin. In Malvern, now.

    His values, both social and fiscal, are obvious. He has never backed away from them while winning elections in Phoenixville. And that brings us to electability:

    Ken is a guy who beat the Phoenixville Democrat Party Chair in one election, and then the Chester County Democrat Treasurer in the next one. In Phoenixville. If you could have just given Guy a victory in Ken’s ward– where Ken already wins elections– Guy would have won.

    • Hi Karl..

      Yes, I am aware of Mr. Buckwalter’s candidacy. Has he been talking with Tredyffrin committee people? I think the way the #’s shake out, unless he gets a few Tredyffrin committee people in his corner, he cannot get the endorsement. That said, if he holds a significant # of Phoenixville votes, he could have great impact at the convention since he could facilitate either Judy or Warren getting the endorsement. That said, I am not one of those who feel that just because Tredyffrin is the major player in the district, the endorsed candidate MUST come from Tredyffrin.

      As for Guy… he won Tredyffrin… Are you saying that Guy could have picked up over 650 votes in Ken’s ward? Why didn’t the Phoenixville GOP come out for Guy?

      The deal is, Guy ran an especially poor race. Paul had the ideal candidate. If Ken can sell the idea that he could deliver Phoenixville – that would be intriguing to the GOP. That would be something the entire GOP would have to consider.

      Are you working for Ken?

  5. It’s the DEMOCRATIC Party. You’ve been watching too much Fox News.

    And Guy Ciarrocchi lost because his positions on a number of issues fall too far to the right for Tredyffrin’s moderate voters.

    Mr. Buckwalter will not fare well in Tredyffrin. Ms. DiFillippo and Mr. Drucker would each beat him handily.

    You can sell, but few will be buyin’ in Tredyffrin.

  6. Hey, anonymous: I don’t take cable. So I don’t watch any cable news.

    Let’s talk about primaries, for now.

    In a three-way primary, Warren and Judy beat each other up. Ken could win.

    Against just Judy, Ms. DiFillippo obviously has some baggage that would encourage people in her neck of the woods to consider someone else. Against just Warren, the same applies, although perhaps less so. I don’t mean to suggest said baggage is accurate, or appropriate, but enough people support each of them that, well, even if they both aren’t running in a primary things could get ugly. Ken, on the other hand, is pretty universally admired. Besides, he owned and operated a business IN Tredyffrin for almost two decades. You don’t think some people know him, too?

    Now, for the general: Believe me, and we will get into this at more length later, the numbers are VERY favorable for a Republican from Phoenixville.

    • Karl…

      A little early to be talking about a primary… There is a convention process to go through first. In a three way race, 2 from Tredyffrin and 1 from Phoenxville, at the very last, Ken could play the spoiler. If he ultimately stays in the race, and is serious, then he better find somebody in Tredyffrin to carry water for him.

      As for the #’s, not sure what your analysis is or how you arrive at the conclusion that a Phoenixville candidate could knock off a Tredyffrin candidate. Of the 440 people in the district that has voted in every primary since 2001, 320 of them are in Tredyffrin. The other 100 are split between Phoenixville and Schuylkill.

      I have to tell you, I think you over-estimate the level to which folks in Tredyffrin “admire” him. I don’t know him…and I am pretty wired in. I know of him..but I really don’t know what he stands for. And given the distribution of votes, Phoenixville is not as influential as you make it out to be. It certainly delivered votes for Paul and was key to his victory. But primary politics are different. If Ken got the shot, it will only be because Tredyffrin allowed that to happen.

      It’s great. he owned a framing store for 20 years.. If you think that translates into the committee coming out for him, your metrics are way off. You say he owned a store in Tredyffrin for 20 years. I say he is a guy who had a business in Tredyffrin….but left.

      In terms of the two Tredyffrin candidates, read what I have written up here. The book on Kampf is pretty clear. I don’t see him playing well in Phoenixville. In that regard, Judy would fare much better.

      Interesting dynamics indeed. Maybe all three should battle it out!!

  7. Hey, John. Miss your regular site, but luckily we have here!

    Yes, I am working with Ken.

    You are assuming at the Convention that Ken will have the least number of votes, thereby relegating him to spoiler. I believe that you will be proven wrong in this assumption.

    The Phoenixville GOP came out great for Guy. But this is 2008 we’re talking about. Obama was da bomb in Phoenixville. Even so, you will discover Guy ran better than McCain. Ergo Phoenixville came out as best as could be managed.

    I am merely saying in a general election if Ken just wins his ward– like he already does repeatedly– that he wins, if all other numbers remain the same.

    Now, how well-known is Ken in Tredyffrin? Well, not as well-known as Judy and Warren. That’s for sure. At the same time, I bet if you could run a poll, you would discover they both have higher negatives than Ken. Not because of anything bad. Just because they have each, rightfully or wrongfully, earned some animosity here and there. Ken, largely, has not.

    Given this, let’s take those 420 weirdly compulsive primary voters. 100 are in Phoenixville and Schuylkill. And lets throw in another 30 across the French Creek. That makes 130 or so voting for Ken, as back of the envelope thinking. Of the remaining 320, how many have to have a beef with the Tredyffrin candidate in a duel primary to tip the scales to Ken? Well, if it’s only about a third of them, Ken is up 230 to 220. Like I said, back of the envelope and all that, but you see what I mean.

    The real point, though, is this: People will learn about what Ken stands for, and they will like it. A record of environmental and fiscal responsibility, decades of experience in municipal service and local government, volunteer firefighter, resident of one major area, businessman in the other. He is not interested in geographic tribalism, except in the sense it makes the general election easier. He is interested in bringing together elements of the party that might be a little testy with one another. He can unite the entire party in a way the other candidates cannot.

    • Karl…

      I see there are 17 committee people in Phoenixville. How many of those would you say are committed to Ken? In Tredyffrin, there are 30 committee people. Schuylkill has 4 precincts. Don’t know if all 8 committee slots are filled. My guess is they are not. But assuming they are and there are 10 other committee slots in Montco, we are talking about needing 34-39 committee votes for an endorsement.

      I get your logic on Judy and Warren splitting up Tredyffrin. Ken could get some votes too – just as Judy and Warren could get votes in Tredyffrin.

      If Ken has Phoenixville behind him, then with 17 votes he is a force to be dealt with at the convention. If he has Schuylkill too, then it becomes really serious.

      How’s Ken on the fund raising side? Is he prepared to run a 50K primary? I think that is what is going to cost.

      Give me three reasons to support Ken.

  8. 1) Ken has a track record of caring about Constitutional government. He put his political career on the line in support of it, and won a unanimous Supreme Court decision doing the right and difficult thing.

    2) Ken was one of the main architects of Phoenixville’s very successful recycling program. This either blows sunshine up your skirt, or it doesn’t, but it for people looking for a different sort of Republican, it is a good thing.

    3) Ken has years and years of experience in municipal government in one main part of the district, and was a long-time business owner in the other. He has very low negatives. He can unite the *entire* party in a way that Warren and Judy, rightfully or wrongfully, cannot. This, in addition to his demonstrated ability to pull votes out of Phoenixville in a general election, makes him the most electable candidate.

    Ken would probably pick a different three things. You should reach out to him and ask him yourself.

    I would not presume to speak for Ken on matters of money and under what circumstances he would run in a primary. He has not even officially announced.

    But I can tell you this: He is selling a family business to do this. Does that sound like someone willing to do the work necessary to run that sort of primary? Seems like it to me.

    • Thanks Karl…

      Ken sounds like a good guy. That said, I don’t see him getting enough Tredyffrin votes for an endorsement. He might get through the first round of voting – but after that, I don’t see all three being in play for a second vote. Given that Tredyffrin, for all intents and purposes, controls the situation, I think the real question is whether Ken’s votes go to Judy or Warren.

      Ken may want to think twice before selling his business…

  9. My pleasure, John. Call Ken. See for yourself. If you think he sounds like a good guy, so will lots of other people in Tredyffrin.

    Seems to me the real question is if a Tredyffrin candidate finishes third place after the second ballot, will that person’s voters go to another Tredyffrin candidate after they’ve been squabbling with each other, or will they largely go to the candidate who promises a real opportunity to unite the Committee behind a single strong candidate.

    Ken is selling his business because he feels the people of PA 157 deserve nothing less than a representative’s full and undivided attention during the race, and in office. Much like his position with the Borough when he took them to court over a Constitutional issue, there is no loophole here for personal or political convenience.

    But thanks for being open-minded. I would like to think that is a typical mindset for most of the Committee people in the district, which is why I think Ken’s chances are excellent.

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