Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of previews leading up to the November 8 general election.

While there is a congressional contest in northern Indiana County, as well as some other counties from Kittanning to Mansfield and Oil City to Williamsport, voters in most Indiana counties have only one choice for Congress.

Despite numerous write-in attempts, no Democratic or third-party candidates have been able to get on the ballot, along with U.S. Rep. Guy Reschenthaler, R-Peters Township, in the newly reformed 14th Congressional District.

His district covers all or part of Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland counties.

In Indiana County, part of South Mahoning Township is in the new 14th, as are all of Armstrong, Blacklick, Brush Valley, Buffington, Burrell, Center, Cherryhill, Conemaugh, East Whitfield, Greene, Pine, Raine, Washington, West -Whitfield, White and Young Townships, and Armagh, Blairsville, Cherry Tree, Clymer, Creekside, Earnest, Homer City, Indiana, Plumville, Salzburg and Shelacta Townships.

Reschenthaler is running for a third term. The son of former teachers, Guy grew up in southwestern Pennsylvania, graduated from Penn State-Behrend, and went to law school at Duquesne University.

After law school, he joined the U.S. Navy’s Solicitor General’s Corps and volunteered to serve in Iraq, where he prosecuted nearly 100 terrorists.

Returning to the United States, he was a naval lawyer in Norfolk, Virginia, then as officer-in-charge of the Office of Naval Legal Services in Texas and Oklahoma.

He then returned to southwestern Pennsylvania, practiced law and had a real estate business before being elected in 2013 as a district judge in Jefferson Hills, Allegheny County.

He was elected to the state Senate in 2015. Since his time in Congress, Reschenthaler has served on the House Appropriations Committee and the Rules Committee.

Meanwhile, voters in much of north-central Pennsylvania, as well as in communities from Kittanning and Smicksburg to Mansfield and from Oil City to Williamsport and Lock Haven, are part of the newly reformed 15th Congressional District.

Union County’s Mike Malesevich won the spring Democratic nomination, while incumbent U.S. Rep. Glenn Thompson, R-Howard Township, won the Republican nomination for his eighth term in the first 10 years. for what was then the Fifth Congressional District.

“Since first being elected to Congress, my life experiences have played a big role in my decisions,” Thompson said. “I am supported by my wife and family, countless volunteers and dedicated staff who work tirelessly to help constituents. We’ve made great strides, expanding career and technical education opportunities, providing telemedicine for our veterans and active-duty military, and as the Republican House Agriculture Committee Chair, I’m working to ensure Pennsylvania’s #1 industry can continue to provide food, the fiber and energy that keeps our country going.”

Malesevich is a former mayor and councilman of Union County, current business owner and energy and environmental consultant, and has more than 40 years of experience helping communities, businesses and industries in rural central Pennsylvania.

“My top priority is my oath of office to uphold and defend our constitution against all enemies, both foreign and domestic, and to hold other elected officials accountable,” Malesevich said. “My second priority is to maintain a strong, ready and modern military and our allies, and to support the men and women in our armed forces and veterans after they have served our nation. My third priority is to support our democracy and the freedom to choose our elected officials, health care, reproductive rights, religion, books in our schools, and other daily choices in our lives without the influence of big government or political party.”

Prior to serving in Congress, Thompson spent nearly 30 years in the nonprofit healthcare industry as a rehabilitation therapist, therapy manager, and licensed nursing home administrator. He holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, and was previously a member of the Bald Eagle County School Board and chairman of the Central District Republican Committee.

“Certainly, we’ve been through a lot in the last few years, new challenges have emerged as we test our supply chain, our workforce and the resilience of our economy,” Thompson said. “Many of these problems are self-inflicted wounds by an administration in one-party control of Washington, with little oversight or checks against massive spending and overregulation. This has led to a 40-year high in inflation and skyrocketing prices for everything from gasoline to groceries and consumer goods. Families face challenges. Budgets are limited. As we move further into recession, it is imperative that we check the Biden White House during the next Congress.”

Malesevich grew up in Mount Carmel, grew up with six siblings, delivered newspapers in the early morning hours and transferred to earn degrees in environmental science from Juniata College and Bucknell University.

“The future belongs to efficient and sustainable users of our natural resources,” Malyasevich said. “Everything we do creates waste, heat and carbon emissions. The laws of physics, science and thermodynamics cannot be overturned – by anyone. The easiest and fastest way to reduce emissions is to improve efficiency and eliminate (or recycle) waste as we transition from burning fossil fuels as quickly as possible to renewable and sustainable fuels for thermal, electrical and mechanical tasks. Fossil fuels will always be needed as components of consumer goods and will become too valuable to burn. As users of energy and resources, we all need to maximize efficiency, eliminate waste, switch to renewable energy and use science to educate our children.”

Redistricting cut off most of Indiana County from the 15th District, leaving a chunk of South Mahoning Township, as well as all of Banks, Canoe, East Mahoning, Grant, Montgomery, North Mahoning and West Mahoning townships, as well as Glen Campbell, Marion Center and Smicksburg.

Still, Thompson recently told a Republican meeting in White Township that he’s “still a team player for the entire county.”

All of Armstrong County remains in the 15th District, which also includes all of Cameron, Center, Clinton, Clearfield, Elk, Forrest, Jefferson, McKean, Potter, Snyder, Tioga, Union and Warren counties, as well as parts of Lycoming around Williamsport and Venango around Oil City.

Malyasevich said that he would “support the right to vote of all voters” and also strive to “vote and not make elections more difficult.” Protect campaign workers, officials and volunteers from threats and intimidation by groups or individuals. Review and revision of election laws as and when necessary. Review and reconsider the influence of money on our elections, such as (US Supreme Court decision) Citizens United (decision),” and “consider open primaries and some public funding to level the playing field for more candidates for elected office.”

He said no incumbent should run unchallenged and would seek to “ensure that redistricting is an open, transparent and fair process to prevent fraud by any political party or special interest.”

Malesevich said his passion for community service has led him to become an active member of several chambers of commerce, the Sierra Club, the Pennsylvania Environmental Council and the US Green Energy Council. And he serves on the board of directors of the Union County Historical Society.

Thompson said the nation must undo American exceptionalism, restore energy independence and “right the ship.” He emphasized that he has a “proven track record of getting things done in Washington and working across the aisle,” even in the face of increasing polarization.

Thompson has his own www.GTThompson.com website, and Malyashevich has his own www.padistrict15.org the company’s website as well as the Friends of PA15 Facebook page.