| Thomas Nolan|
| Jim Gerlach|
| August 8, 1930 (age 85)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States (1930-08-08) |
Frank Pecora Wikipedia
Frank Anthony Pecora (August 8, 1930 – June 12, 2017) was a member of the Pennsylvania State Senate, who represented the 44th District from 1979 to 1994.
Pecora was first elected to the Senate in 1978.
Several prominent Pennsylvania Democrats previously worked for Pecora, including former State Senator Sean Logan and Congressman Michael Doyle.
Pecora, as a political moderate, had fallen out of favor with his party's leadership by the early 1990s, despite the fact that he had served over thirteen years in the State Senate as a member of the Republican Party. In 1991, the Republican-controlled legislature passed a reapportionment plan that moved Pecora's district several hundred miles (over 400 km) across the state, from Allegheny County to Chester County, to the east. Determined to continue in the Senate, Pecora followed his district and rented an apartment in Chester County, and continued serving his new constituents.
By late 1992, Republicans held a 26-24 majority in the chamber. Pecora, still upset with the reapportionment decision, decided to switch parties and vote with the Democrats. This decision changed the Senate's partisan makeup to an even 25-25, allowing Democratic Lieutenant Governor Mark Singel to cast the tie-breaking vote that allowed Democrats to gain control of the chamber. Republican Bob Jubelirer, who lost his position as President pro tempore of the body to Bob Mellow, characterized the decision as "a knife in the back".
Pecora announced prior to the 1994 elections that he would not seek re-election in his new district. His former seat was won by Republican State Representative Jim Gerlach (who was later elected to Congress), helping Republicans regain control of the Senate. He died on June 12, 2017.