The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


February 1, 2008

Longtime lawyer 3rd Democrat to join race in 71st

As one of three Democrats running to represent the state House’s 71st District, Bryan Barbin is ready for a battle.

“I’m going to stand up for Johnstown,” the Johnstown lawyer said.

“And at the end, we’ll see who’s standing.”

Barbin on Wednesday announced his candidacy for the seat held by Democratic state Rep. Ed Wojnaroski, who is not seeking re-election.

Tom Chernisky of Geistown and William D. Stasko of Westmont also have entered the race.

No Republicans have announced yet.

During a lunchtime gathering, Barbin touted his quarter-century of experience in the legal field.

In the public sector, that includes a clerkship for the state Supreme Court’s chief justice and more than six years of work in the state Attorney General’s Office.

Barbin, 50, is a partner in the downtown Johnstown law firm of Gleason, McQuillan, Barbin and Markovitz.

He previously founded and managed a law firm in Harrisburg, and he said that his expertise with issues such as taxes and insurance makes him a good fit for a legislative job.

“I know how to get problems resolved with the state,” Barbin said.

The Westmont resident and father of four also took pains to detail his roots in the Johnstown area, saying he represents the fourth generation of lawyers practicing here.

If elected, Barbin said he would accept no increases in legislative pay or pension benefits.

His said his priorities would include education, economic development and tax reform.

“I will work to lower taxes for all families that continue to struggle to make ends meet,” Barbin said.

Among those attending Barbin’s announcement was Johnstown Mayor Tom Trigona, who will be a campaign co-chairman.

Barbin’s press conference took place in the former waiting room of Johnstown’s train station.

Though the high-ceilinged chamber is an architectural marvel, it now is rarely used, and supporters shivered in the chill.

Barbin noted that the Amtrak station at one time bustled with activity.

“This building should serve as a landmark for the whole community to say, ‘We can do better,’ ” he said.

Barbin says he is optimistic about his hometown. The future is simply a matter of “putting the pieces together,” he said.

“There’s no place in this whole commonwealth that is better to raise a family than right here,” Barbin said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • corbett Corbett's climate stance draws fire, pulls money to governor’s race

    When new clean air rules came out in June targeting emissions at coal power plants, the Corbett campaign tried to link Democrat Tom Wolf to the Obama Administration policies.
    That kind of politicizing of energy policy might come back to haunt the governor in the fall.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Why North Korean cheerleaders may soon descend on the South

    When you think of North Korea, "cheerleaders" may not be the first thing that springs to mind. The Hermit Kingdom is perhaps better known for less savory things like gulag-like labor camps and leadership purges.

    July 10, 2014

  • Court strikes down abortion clinic buffer zones

    Last week, the Supreme Court unanimously struck down protest-free buffer zones around abortion clinics in Massachusetts as an unconstitutional infringement on free speech.
    But Chief Justice John Roberts' ruling was a narrow one, pointing out that other states and cities had found less intrusive ways to both protect women entering clinics and accommodate the First Amendment rights of those opposed to abortion.

    July 6, 2014

  • What states can do on their own about immigration

    It's official: Congress won't take up immigration reform this year. This week, President Barack Obama said he'll use executive actions to change policies unilaterally.

    July 5, 2014

  • Corbett defends linking pensions, liquor to taxes

    Gov. Tom Corbett said Thursday that legislative approval of changes to public-sector pension systems would make him more open to the possibility of raising taxes to balance the state budget.

    June 26, 2014

  • Suggestions pouring in for Corbett campaign

    Gov. Tom Corbett, trailing badly in the polls and running out of time to reconcile anemic tax collections with election-year appetites for new spending, has undoubtedly gotten plenty of advice from fellow Republicans on how to assure his political future.
    State GOP leaders interviewed by The Associated Press offered up a number of ideas.

    June 14, 2014

  • Dem boss.JPG Cambria Dems pick chairman

    A longtime prominent figure in the local labor community has been selected as the Cambria County Democratic Party’s new chairman.

    June 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Groups keep fingers crossed over scramble to balance budget

    Advocates and government agencies are chewing their fingernails as legislative leaders and the governor’s office scramble to close a $1.3 billion budget gap.

    June 10, 2014

  • Water resources policy updated

    What certainly can be considered one of the signature legislative initiatives of U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster’s political career became law on Tuesday.

    June 10, 2014

  • Alison_Lundergan_Grimes_2011.jpg Kentucky Senate race hangs on coal counties that rejected Obama

    President Barack Obama's decision to propose tougher limits on power-plant emissions poses a threat to Democrats in the coal-rich mountainsides of Kentucky and to their efforts to keep control of the Senate.

    June 4, 2014 1 Photo


What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results
Order Photos

Photo Slideshow

House Ads