State Republicans have chosen Chester County’s Val DiGiorgio as the next Pennsylvania GOP chairman.
DiGiorgio won the race 173-171 at the party’s annual winter meeting in Hersey on Saturday, securing just two more votes than competitor Lawrence Tabas, the state GOP’s Philadelphia-based general counsel. DiGiorgio will take over for longtime Pennsylvania GOP chairman Rob Gleason.
DiGiorgio is a 49-year-old public finance attorney who has served as chairman of the Chester County GOP since 2011. He had secured support from Gleason and other members of the party establishment, including retiring vice chairwoman Joyce Hess, U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey and both national committee members.
DiGiorgio will now lead the party’s push to increase Republican influence in the state’s southeastern counties, where voters have failed to echo the same fervor felt for President Donald Trump in the state’s western and central counties, which helped to flip the state red for the first time in 28 years. Gleason recently told the Inquirer that “the Republican Party is getting stronger and stronger all around the state except for the collar counties and the city of Philadelphia. The next chairman’s going to have to deal with that.”
The effort will focus on Philadelphia, Bucks, Delaware and Montgomery counties, as well as DiGiorgio’s own Chester County – the state’s highest-income county – where Clinton defeated Trump by more than 250,000 votes.
DiGiorgio told the Inquirer that policies appealing to affluent conservatives who live in state’s southeastern counties will likely help to win support from those who might not have been attracted to Trump’s working-class campaign message, which helped win over Pennsylvania’s rural counties.
In Philadelphia, the registration gap has gone from an 8-1 Democratic edge to a roughly 7-1 Democratic edge, with 13,000 Republicans registering within the last year, county GOP Chairman Joe DeFelice recently told Philadelphia Weekly.
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