HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA) — In addition to the hotly contested presidential race, Pennsylvania voters will also be electing a state treasurer.
The state treasurer is the custodian of over $120 billion, managing and investing part of it. This year, Republican businesswoman Stacy Garrity is taking on incumbent Democrat Joe Torsella, who is running for reelection.
“The treasurer looks after the money. It’s important to do that with integrity and accountability – and do that with transparency – and I’ve been a leader in my four years in all those things,” Torsella told KDKA political editor Jon Delano.
After a scandal-plagued elected predecessor went to jail, Torsella prides himself on cleaning up the treasurer’s office.
“We’ve radically changed how we invest it. We shifted away entirely from the Wall Street snake oil salesmen who tell us we can ‘beat the market if we just pay them a handsome fee to do it,'” says Torsella.
WATCH: KDKA’s Jon Delano Has More With Both Candidates
“And in making that shift, we have saved Pennsylvanians $700 million.”
Torsella’s challenger is Garrity, a retired Army Reserve Colonel who served in Iraq in charge of a prison camp.
“Our mission was to provide care and custody for 7,000 detainees, and I had 1,200 soldiers under my command. And we were the very first internment facility to have zero escape attempts and zero abuse allegations,” says Garrity.
Garrity says she’s running to serve a full four-year term, and she accuses Torsella of looking at higher office.
“I’m not looking at this as a stepping-stone to run for something else, and the incumbent treasurer kind of has one foot out the door,” says Garrity. “He has his sights set on either running for governor or running for Senate.”
Calling that charge a political gimmick, Torsella won’t categorically deny it, but he adds, “I really like this job. I ran for this job to hold this job.”
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