This week, Katayoun “Kat” Copeland announced her candidacy for Pennsylvania’s attorney general in 2024. Copeland, who previously worked as a federal prosecutor, is eager to take on this new challenge and help uphold justice in the state.
Before declaring her bid for attorney general, the highest law enforcement position in the state, Copeland, a member of the Republican party, resigned from her post at the U.S. attorney’s office in Philadelphia.
With a budget of roughly $140 million per year, the office takes on significant responsibilities, including apprehending drug traffickers, combatting gun trafficking, litigating state laws, and safeguarding consumers against exploitative practices.
Joe Biden’s victory in the battleground state was defended with key support from this entity. Despite repeated attempts by Donald Trump’s campaign and Republican allies to overturn it in both state and federal courts, this entity played a pivotal role in ensuring the election results were upheld.
At 56 years old, Copeland has a wealth of experience in the legal field. She previously worked as a prosecutor for Delaware County in suburban Philadelphia and even served as the court-appointed district attorney for two years. In 2019, she ran for a four-year term as district attorney but was ultimately defeated by Democrat Jack Stollsteimer.
Copeland has an extensive background as a prosecutor, having worked for both the district attorney’s office and the U.S. attorney’s office for a total of 30 years. During her time at the U.S. attorney’s office, she excelled in her career, eventually becoming the chief of the criminal division and serving in the national security and cybercrimes unit.
There are other contenders vying for the Republican nomination aside from Copeland. Dave Sunday, the district attorney of York County, has already thrown his hat in the ring and has received an endorsement from the Republican Attorneys General Association. Meanwhile, Craig Williams, a state House member representing Delaware County, has also expressed his intention to run for the same position.
State Representative Jared Solomon of Philadelphia, former State Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, former federal prosecutor Joe Kahn, and Keir Bradford-Grey, the former head of Philadelphia’s and Montgomery County’s public defense lawyers, are among the four Democrats who have announced their candidacies.
To make it to the primary ballot on April 23, candidates are required to complete their paperwork by February 13.
Michelle Henry, the current Attorney General, has stated that she has no intention of running for a full term. She was appointed to the position after Josh Shapiro became governor, with the mandate to serve out the remainder of his term.