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Drexel Library

Drexel Votes

A guide to voting in Pennsylvana, and US elections.


The 2023 General Election date is Tuesday, November 7th. 

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November 2023 General Election

2023 General Election Candidates

City of Philadelphia, Mayor

According to Philadelphia’s Home Rule Charter, “executive and administrative power of the City, as it now exists, shall be exclusively vested in and exercised by a Mayor and such other officers, departments, boards and commissions as are designated and authorized in this charter.” The mayor, who appoints those officers, department heads and board and commission members, also presides over a $5.8 billion budget and more than 25,000 City employees. He or she must be at least 25 years old, a citizen of the U.S. and a three-year resident of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia City Council

 Of the 17 Council members, seven are elected “at-large” (by voters from throughout Philadelphia) and 10 from districts. Of the seven at-large members, no more than five can be from the political party with the largest number of registered voters in the city. There are no party restrictions on district members. All members must be at least 25 years old, be U.S. citizens and residents of the City for at least one year. (District members must have lived in their districts for a year.)

  • 1st District
    • Democratic Party: Mark Squilla (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 2nd District
    • Democratic Party: Kenyatta Johnson (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 3rd District
    • Democratic Party: Jamie Gauthier (Incumbent)
    • West is Best: Jabari Jones
  • 4th District
    • Democratic Party: Curtis Jones, Jr. (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 5th District
    • Democratic Party: Jeffery Jay Young (unopposed)
  • 6th District
    • Michael Driscoll (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 7th District
    • Democratic Party: Quetcy Lozada (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 8th District
    • Democratic Party: Cindy Bass (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 9th District
    • Democratic Party: Anthony Phillips (Incumbent, unopposed)
  • 10th District
    • Democratic Party:Gary Masino
    • Republican Party: Brian O'Neill
  • City Council Candidates, At-Large
    • Democratic Party Candidates:
      • Isaiah Thomas (Incumbent)
      • Katherine Gilmore Richardson (Incumbent)
      • Rue Landau
      • Nina Ahmed
      • Jim Harrity (Incumbent)
    • Republican Party Candidates:
      • Jim Hasher
      • Drew Murray
    • Working Families Party Candidates:
      • Kendra Brooks
      • Nicolas O'Rourke


Philadelphia City Commissioners

From the City Commissioners' website: 

The Philadelphia City Commissioners are a three-member bipartisan board of elected officials in charge of elections and voter registration for the City of Philadelphia. Each Commissioner is elected to serve a four-year term that coincides with the municipal election cycle for Mayor and City Council.

The Commissioners set and enforce departmental policies to administer voter registration and conduct elections in accordance with federal and state voter registration and election laws.

Only 2 Commissioners can be from the majority party.


  • Democratic Party

    • Omar Sabir (incumbent)

    • Lisa Deeley (incumbent)

  • Republican Party

    • Seth Bluestein - (incumbent)

City Controller

Independent of the Mayor and City Council, the City Controller conducts independent audits and analyses that provide objective information to city officials, the public, and other interested parties about the city’s financial operations, and on ways to improve city operations and the use of public resources.


  • Democratic Party: Christy Brady (Incumbent)
  • Republican Party: Aaron Bashir

Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office provides security in the First Judicial Court (Philadelphia) courtrooms and manages court-ordered property foreclosures and tax sales. The sheriff, who is elected citywide to a four-year term, must be at least 25 years old, a citizen of the U.S. and a one-year resident of Philadelphia.


  • Democratic Party: Rochelle Bilal (Incumbent)
  • Republican Party: Mark LaVelle
Register of Wills

Philadelphia’s Register of Wills is responsible for probating wills and granting letters of administration when persons die without leaving a will. The office also maintains records of wills, inventories of estates and similar documents and serves as an agent for the state for filing and payment of inheritance taxes. The office’s other important function is to issue marriage licenses. The Register of Wills, who is elected citywide to a four-year term, must be at least 25 years old, a citizen of the U.S. and a one-year resident of Philadelphia.


  • Democratic Party: John Sabatina
  • Republican Party: Linwood Holland

Judicial Offices

Visit to learn about the structure of the Pennsylvania court system, and how judges are elected.

Statewide Offices:

Justice of the Supreme Court (vote for 1)
  • Democratic Party: Daniel McCaffery
  • Republican Party: Carolyn Carluccio
Judge of the Superior Court (vote for not more than 2)
  • Democratic Party Candidates:
    • Tamika Lane
    • Jill Beck
  • Republican Party Candidates:
    • Maria Battista
    • Harry F. Smail, Jr.
Judge of the Commonwealth Court (vote for 1)
  • Democratic Party: Matt Wolf
  • Republican Party: Megan Martin

Citywide Offices:

Judge of the Court of Common Pleas (vote for not more than 12)
  • Democratic Party Candidates:
    • Natasha Taylor-Smith
    • Tamika Washington
    • Samantha Williams
    • Kay Yu
    • John Padova
    • Chesley Lightsey
    • Brian McLaughlin
    • Damaris Garcia
    • Caroline Turner
    • Jessica R. Brown
  • Republican Party
    • There are no Republican candidates for this office
Judge of the Municipal Court (vote for no more than 2)
  • Democratic Party Candidates:
    • Colleen McIntyre Osborne
    • Barbara Thomson
  • Republican Party Candidate:
    • Rania M. Major

Judicial Retentions:

Superior Court:
  • Jack Panella
  • Victor P. Stabile
Court of Common Pleas:
  • Jacqueline F. Allen
  • Genece E. Brinkley
  • Giovanni O. Campbell
  • Anne Marie B. Coyle
  • Ramy I. Djerassi
  • Joe Fernandes
  • Holly J. Ford
  • Timika Lane
  • J. Scott O'Keefe
  • Paula A. Patrick
  • Sierra Thomas Street
  • Nina Wright Padilla
Municipal Court:
  • Marissa Brumbach
  • William A. Meehan, Jr.
  • Brad Moss
  • David Shuter
  • Karen Yvette Simmons
  • Marvin L. Williams
  • Matt Wolf

Ballot Questions

The following proposed amendments to the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter will be voted on in November:

  • Resolution No. 230430: Should the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter be amended to create an Office for People with Disabilities to coordinate the City’s compliance with requirements to provide access for people with disabilities to City services and programs and to otherwise provide for incorporation of the Office into the City government?

Ballot questions can be confusing!  The Committee of Seventy Voter Guide (see below) always provides a good "clear language" explanation of the ballot questions.

Voting Guides

Committee of Seventy - Philadelphia General Election Voter Guide

Billy Penn (at WHYY) - Elections & Politics in Philadelphia

The Philadelphia Citizen - Politics

Philadelphia Bar Association, Judicial Commission (for ratings of judicial candidates)

Voter Registration and You

You are eligible to vote in U.S. federal elections if:

  • You are a U.S. citizen.
  • You meet your state’s residency requirements.
  • You are 18 years old. Some states allow 17-year-olds to vote in primaries and/or register to vote if they will be 18 before the general election.  Check your state’s voter registration age requirements.

Voter Registration Deadlines

In all states except North Dakota, you must register before you can vote. Registration deadlines vary. Some states close registration 30 days before the election, while others allow voters to register up to and on Election Day.  Find out your state's voter registration deadline for the general election.

Voter Registration is by State

  • You must be registered in your state of legal residence; as a student, this can be either your home address, or your campus address. If you’ve changed states permanently, you must re-register in your new state.

    • You can’t be registered to vote in more than one place at a time. When you register to vote in a new location, you’ll be asked for your previous address. Your new election office will send a cancelation form to your previous election office.

  • If you’ll be temporarily away from home during the election, you can vote by absentee ballot with your state of legal residence. Examples of voters who’ve moved or are away temporarily include:

    • Military members stationed outside of their state of legal residence
    • Students attending college out of state
    • People on vacation or business trips

Different states use different rules and procedures for voting; some states allow early voting or voting by mail; others don't. Make sure you know what the procedures are in the state where you are registered. You can only vote at a Philadelphia polling place if you are registered to vote in Pennsylvania, at a Philadelphia address!

Voting in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has recently (9/19/2023) announced implementation of "automatic voter registration", integrated with the driver's license/State ID application process. WHYY news story: Pennsylvania has made it easier to register to vote when drivers get or renew a license

Pennsylvania Mail-in Ballots


  • Complete your ballot by filling in the oval next to your selected candidates' names.
  • Put your ballot in the blue "Official Election Ballot" envelope. Seal the envelope; do not write anything on the outside.
  • Put the blue Ballot envelope into the white pre-addressed mailing envelope.*
  • On the back of the mailing envelope, sign and date the envelope. Per a recent Supreme Court ruling, it is possible that undated ballots will not be counted.
  • Return your ballot by U.S. Mail in time for it to arrive at your county elections office by Tuesday, May 16th; it is not enough for it to be postmarked by the 16th.
  • Or, drop it off at your county election office; in Philadelphia, official ballot drop-off locations, and mobile ballot collection locations/times are announced in the weeks immediately preceding the election. Ballots must be dropped off by 8:00 p.m. on election day.
  • You may only drop off your own ballot; if you have a disability that prevents you from delivering your own ballot, you must complete this form to designate an "agent" to deliver your ballot for you.

* In Philadelphia terms -- put the jawn in the jawn, put that jawn in the other jawn, and sign and date the back of the jawn!

Voting in Philadelphia

About Wards, Ward Leaders, and Committee Persons:

Philadelphia is geographically divided into 66 wards. Each ward is further divided into 10-50 divisions based on population. Every four years, during the primary election of the governor’s race, registered Democratic voters in each division elect two of their neighbors to serve as the division’s Democratic committee persons; likewise, registered Republican voters elect two Republican committee persons. The elected committee persons make up each party’s ward committee, and vote for a ward leader shortly after the election, usually informally at a meeting of the ward committee. Read more about the important of Ward Leaders at .

Drexel University (University City Campus) is in the 27th ward. The Ward Leaders are: