Elections Government

Two Republicans Booted From Ballot In Newtown Twp. Supervisors Race

Voters waiting in line outside the Newtown Township building in November 2016.
Credit: Tom Sofield/NewtownPANow.com

A county judge has thrown two Republican candidates for Newtown Township Supervisor off the primary ballot.

Judge Robert Mellon made the decision Monday to drop Republicans Jerry Festa and Laure Gensbauer from the May 16 primary ballot after they did not file required statement of financial interest forms.

The petition to remove the two candidates was filed last week by Newtown Township resident James Ritchie, who was represented by attorneys Jordan Yeager and Charissa Liller of Doylestown-based Curtin and Heefner LLP, according to a court petition.

Genbauer and Festa can still make the general election ballot if they mount and win a successful write-in campaign, which can be an uphill battle in any election.

Newtown First Committee Chairman Kyle Davis, who also serves as a Newtown Township supervisor, released the following statement:

While it is true Laure and Jerry’s names have been removed from the ballot due to a Washington D.C.-style partisan political attack by our Democratic opponents, we will conduct a write-in campaign and they will be successful in the May Primary Election. The voters of Newtown Township are simply too smart to fall for such silly political games.

While the proper paperwork was filed with the state and county election services, a copy was inadvertently not delivered to local township offices. Through our review of our opponents’ paperwork, we found issues that could have been challenged in court but chose not to pursue this path and, instead, let the voters decide. It is a shame the Democratic party thinks so little of the quality of their candidates that they chose to undertake this futile effort in an attempt to hijack an election.

Sitting Republican Supervisor Gerry Couch will remain on the ballot as he filed his  statement of financial interest on deadline. He was appointed to former Supervisor Mike Gallagher’s seat last year when he become Bucks County Controller.

Davis told NewtownPANow.com that Genbauer and Festa were first-time candidates who stepped up to serve their community.

Newtown Township supervisor terms last six years and three seats will be open in the November election.

About the author

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield has covered news in Bucks County for five years for both newspaper and online publications. In 2012, Tom was honored at the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association Foundation's Keystone Press Awards for his coverage of President Obama's visit to Falls Township in 2011. When he's not covering news in the area, Tom enjoys checking out the newest restaurants and bars, exploring forgotten places of industry in the area, going to local parks and spending time with his friends and family. If there's one thing you should know about Tom, he is a local news junkie through and through. Email: tom@newtownpanow.com Phone: 215-431-1001