Sewickley's Tarasi latest Democrat to enter 12th Congressional district race.

By J.D. Prose jprose@calkins.com - Tribune Review Beaver County- May 18, 2017 

Beth Tarasi, an attorney from Sewickley and former basketball player for the University of Pittsburgh, is Democrat to enter the 2018 primary race for the 12th Congressional District currently held by Republican Rothfus of Sewickley.

A Sewickley attorney, who is also a former University of Pittsburgh basketball player, is the third announced candidate for the 12th Congressional District Democratic primary with an eye on ousting Republican U.S. Rep. Keith Rothfus in 2018.

Beth Tarasi, 57, of the Tarasi & Tarasi law firm in Pittsburgh, has joined a growing field of Democratic hopefuls, including McCandless Township resident Tom Prigg, 46, a Carnegie Mellon University research associate and former Army Scout sniper, and 34-year-old Shaler Township native Aaron Anthony, a former Shaler Area School District English teacher moving back to his hometown from Pittsburgh to run.

All three have ties to Pitt, with Prigg earning a bachelor's degree in neural-psychology and sociology and Anthony currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education policy. Anthony also earned a master's in leadership and organizational studies from Robert Morris University in Moon Township.

A 1978 Quaker Valley High School graduate, Tarasi attended Pitt on a basketball scholarship and served as team captain, graduating in 1982. She earned her law degree from Duquesne University.

In a release, Tarasi stressed her family's "history of hard work and commitment" from one grandfather working as a coal miner and another as a union steelworker to her father being the first in his family to graduate from college and later becoming an attorney.

Tarasi said in her release that she took night classes at Duquesne while working a day job.

On her Facebook page ("Tarasi for Congress PA 12th Congressional District"), Tarasi says she is running "because the middle class are getting the short end of (the) stick from the politicians in Washington."

Tarasi says in her Facebook post that fellow Sewickley resident Rothfus is "out of touch with the people of western Pennsylvania" and ignoring the "lack of good paying jobs," as well as rising costs for health care and college tuition.

"Time and time again," Tarasi says, "Rothfus has sided with the wealthy special interests in Washington over the people he is supposed to represent."

The 12th Congressional District includes Beaver County, southern Lawrence County, Allegheny County's North Hills and portions of Westmoreland, Cambria and Somerset counties.