Diane Elliott, a former member of Northampton County Council (1994-6) and brownfield development consultant is reportedly the Democrats' top pick. Diane is a graduate of the University of Miami School of Law (1977), and also has a Master's degree in environmental science from the New Jersey Institute of Technology (1995). Most recently, she was employed at Lafayette College.
"She does her homework," is what one of her former colleagues tells me.
Northampton County Republicans were divided over Craig Dally staffer Marcia Hahn, Wind Gap Attorney Nick Sabatine and political newcomer David Green. Under their bylaws, committee members from that district make a recommendation, but the executive committee has the final word.
David Green, who impressed committee members with his understanding of the issues and conservative ideals, won their recommendation over Marcia Hahn in a 14-10 vote on Thursday night. But the executive committee, who under its bylaws may ignore that recommendation, went with Hahn.
Of course, the place exploded. Ron Angle went into one of his trademark tirades and Joe Emrick stormed out of the building. I received telephone calls and emails from upset committee members all morning.
Last night, a member of the executive committee explained why they went with Hahn. First, she has 24 years experience working as a staffer for Craig and Lenny Gruppo, during which she obviously made numerous contacts. Second, the vote recommending Green was by no means overwhelming. Third, although Green is certainly knowledgeable and should be encouraged to run, he has no experience running an actual campaign. Fourth, it makes sense to field a female candidate against a female candidate. Finally, their selection of a candidate in the special election in no way prevents Green from mounting his own campaign in the separate primary that will be conducted simultaneously.
I hate when decisions like this are made in some back room. But in a special election, the parties, and not the people, pick the nominees. There will still be another primary election for the very same seat in which Green and Sabatine can run, but I have a feeling everyone is going to be very confused.