By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) – Voters in Pennsylvania are choosing party nominees for state legislative races and in some areas, they’ll also be voting for candidates who’ll serve the unexpired terms of lawmakers who’ve resigned.

There are several special elections to fill vacancies in the state House, and among the most closely watched will be in the 153rd District, where voters will select a successor to Montgomery County Commissioner Joshua Shapiro, and in Philadelphia’s 169th, where voters will pick a replacement for City Councilman Dennis O’Brien.

There are also several hotly contested Democratic primary races for state House in the city.

Among them is the 180th, where incumbent Angel Cruz faces two challengers: Jonathan Ramos, a retired police officer who narrowly lost to Cruz two years ago, and social worker Anthony Johnson.

In the 188th, James Roebuck – the ranking Democrat on the House Education Committee — is being challenged by tuition-voucher advocate Fatimah Muhammad.

And in the 182nd, incumbent Babette Josephs is being challenged by her former campaign treasurer Brian Sims.