Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Kane First Democrat, Woman to Win Office

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Kane First Democrat, Woman to Win Office

Article excerpt

SCRANTON, Pa. -- Kathleen Kane became Pennsylvania's first Democrat and first woman elected attorney general Tuesday night, easily defeating Republican David Freed.

Ms. Kane, who spent 12 years as an assistant district attorney in the Lackawanna County prosecutor's office, addressed a crowded victory party at the Radisson hotel here shortly after 11 p.m.

She said she was particularly proud of becoming the commonwealth's first elected female attorney general, describing it as an important milestone for her nieces on stage behind her.

"We expanded the boundaries for women in Pennsylvania," Ms. Kane said, drawing cheers from the crowd. "We have expanded the boundaries for your daughters."

She spent much of the evening watching returns in a hotel suite with her family, while Mr. Freed could be seen at several points greeting supporters as they trickled into his gathering near Harrisburg.

The Cumberland County district attorney said both candidates ran a tough race and congratulated her on a "sound victory."

"After the primary election when Kathleen won, I sent her a text message and I said either way this turns out I think Pennsylvania dodged a bullet because no matter what, we'll have somebody who does have prosecutorial experience in the attorney general's office," Mr. Freed said in a brief speech Tuesday night, with his wife and three children at his side.

A victory for Ms. Kane brings the first change in political control for the attorney general's office since it became an elected position in 1980.

While current attorney general Linda Kelly also is a woman, she was appointed by Tom Corbett in 2011 when he stepped down to become governor. Pennsylvania voters have never elected a woman to as their top law-enforcement officer.

The Democrat pledged throughout the race to bring more change than just a pair of demographic firsts.

She pummelled Mr. Corbett and state prosecutors over their handling of the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse probe, promising to investigate why it took three years to bring charges and whether too few resources were allocated to the case. …

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