PA Democrats Argue Jailed DeWeese Can't Be Candidate
The Pennsylvania Democratic Party told a state judge Wednesday that former House speaker Bill DeWeese should be removed from the fall ballot so they can replace him with a candidate who is eligible to serve.
The case before the Commonwealth Court arose after DeWeese, the legislature’s longtime Democratic floor leader, was sent to prison in April for 2½-to-five-years on corruption charges.
DeWeese went to jail on the same day that primary voters in his Pennsylvania district renominated him for another term. Lawyer Cliff Levine represents the state Democratic Party. He and the three people sued to remove DeWeese, saying he became ineligible to serve after a jury in February found him guilty of five felonies for using state workers and resources to campaign.
The state constitution prohibits those convicted of infamous crimes from holding public office. DeWeese's lawyer, Courtney Powell, told the judge that removing DeWeese would be premature, as he's pursuing appeals in the case.
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