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Bernstine takes District 8th

In the race for the 8th District Pennsylvania House seat, Aaron Bernstine surpassed John L. Kennedy and Eric Ditullio in unofficial votes during the primary election Tuesday.

Combined with Lawrence County’s unofficial totals, Bernstine defeated Kennedy with 5,821 votes to 4,880 votes.

According to unofficial results, Kennedy had 4,378 votes from Butler County residents, while Bernstine collected 3,009 and Ditullio had 1,030. In Lawrence County, Bernstine had 2,812 votes, which resulted in his win; Kennedy collected 502.

Incumbent Bernstine, who serves the 10th District, ran for the 8th District as territories realigned through redistricting. He ran alongside Kennedy, of Middlesex Township, and Ditullio, of Lancaster Township.

Bernstine said he’s grateful for the campaign he and his team ran alongside his fellow candidates.

“I’m thankful for the campaign we ran alongside Kennedy and Ditullio. This campaign was about ideas and who’s the most qualified to do the work of the 8th Legislative District,” he said.

Bernstine added that it was “a real honor” to be elected.

“Sixty-eight percent of this district was new,” he said. “I got to meet brand new people and appreciated people welcoming me into their homes and talking about issues that are important to them, and important to Butler County.”

Kennedy wanted to thank the voters who supported him.

“I’m truly thankful for the people I met and the respect they showed me. To the voters, thank you for realizing I’m here for the community. I’m here for the people,” he said. “Thank you to the community for coming out and voting for me and the people who helped me. It’s friends and family who helped me get here.”

Ditullio said he felt his campaign went well.

“There were a lot of steps taken. I think I wore out a pair of tennis shoes from all the walking, but it was a good thing,” he said. “I’m glad (people) got out to vote. That’s our duty as Americans. Of course I’m disappointed, but people voted have voted with their heart and conscience and whoever the victorious person is, we owe them our support.”

After the 2022 redistricting of state legislature boundaries, in addition to Lawrence County, the 8th District consists of Butler County's Brady, Center, Clay, Connoquenessing, Forward, Franklin, Lancaster, Middlesex, Muddy Creek, Penn and Worth townships; and Connoquenessing, Portersville, Prospect, West Liberty and West Sunbury boroughs.

New to the district are Connoquenessing, Forward, Middlesex, Penn and Lancaster townships, as well as Connoquenessing and Prospect boroughs.

Some municipalities have moved to other restructured districts, including Cherry, Marion and Mercer townships, as well as Harrisville borough.