State Senate Democrats said on Monday that the Republican majority will not let Brewster take his seat for a fourth term.By Lindsay Ward

HARRISBURG (KDKA) — The election was two months ago, yet the fight continues for the 45th Senatorial District seat. The Republican majority says they will delay Tuesday’s swearing-in for Democratic Senator Jim Brewster.

This comes with some harsh words from the Democrats. They say the Republican majority is trying to “steal an election” and are “abusing the process.”

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All of this revolves around the election of Democratic Senator Jim Brewster and Republican challenger Nicole Ziccarelli. Brewster beat Ziccarelli by 69 votes in the November 3rd election, according to state-certified returns last month.

Tuesday morning, Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa said Republicans never intended to seat the rightful winner, Jim Brewster.

“We cannot allow a process within the State Senate to usurp the court’s authority to be able to look at this matter and resolve this matter. We’re opening Pandora’s box on this matter,” Costa said.

KDKA spoke to Brewster last week.

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“What do you tell thousands of voters out there when elections have been over for almost two months — that a certified candidate can’t honor or won’t be sworn in? I don’t know, I can’t even think of an explanation,” said Brewster.


On Monday, with Ziccarelli contesting the results, the GOP said they will be delaying the swearing-in of a senator for the district.

KDKA reached out to Ziccarelli about the Republican’s decision and she says:

“I’m grateful that the State Senate is taking the time to seriously consider my contest of this election. I am confident that when they review the law and the facts of this race that they will agree with me that I have won this election by 24 votes.”

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Ziccarelli has asked a federal judge to toss out mail-in ballots in Allegheny County where voters neglected to date the outer envelopes contrary to state law — although the ballots were received on-time, and the state Supreme Court allowed the votes to be counted.