Tuesday's primary will narrow GOP gubernatorial, Senate fields


Christiana believes the state could benefit from having someone from Western Pennsylvania as it is not highly recognized in the senate.

During Pennsylvania's Tuesday, May 15, 2018, primary election, Republican Party voters in the state will select Barletta or Pennsylvania state Rep. Jim Christiana as their nominee to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen.

That's not exactly a huge margin for Barletta, a longtime congressman who had the explicit endorsement of the President - and who spent almost $2 million on the race to just $250,000 for Christiana. Lamb, who is running in the new 17th District, has no Democratic primary opponent and will meet Republican U.S. Rep Keith Rothfus, who now represents the old 12th District, in November. These results are unlikely to calm their nerves.

The mutual admiration between Barletta and Trump should be of little surprise. That loyalty earned him Trump's early assist within the Senate race, in addition to recorded phone calls final weekend that includes the president backing Barletta "absolutely, strongly and proudly". Barletta is a favorite of Trump, whom Barletta endorsed in 2016.

He ran unopposed on the Democratic ballot. "Like me, Lou Barletta is strong on the wall, tough on immigration and has already cut your taxes. If you, like all of the others, want to keep it going this way, go out and vote for Lou".

"They're exhausted of the same old guard and the same cast of characters who run for reelection every year", says Christiana. The 58-year-old Scranton native is the son of the late former governor, Robert P. Casey, and is possibly the best-known political name in Pennsylvania.

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Ward won out after largely leading the night, garnering more than 70 percent of the vote in the district.

Barletta, 62, who rocketed to national prominence thanks to his battles against crime and illegal immigrants while mayor, also was an early and enthusiastic supporter of Donald Trump's bid for the White House, and has enjoyed President Trump's support.

Democrats also picked Mary Gay Scanlon, a local school board member, in a packed primary in the 5th District, an area vacated by former GOP Rep. Patrick Meehan, where the Democrats are all but certain to make one of the 23 pickups they will need to take control of the House.

Casey also sported almost $10 million in campaign funds late last month as opposed to Barletta's $1.3 million, the network added.

Casey goes into the general election with an edge - especially if Trump's approval ratings continue to remain underwater closer to the November election.

Republican Lou Barletta will be facing off against Democratic U.S. Senator Bob Casey in November. Pat Toomey won by fewer than 2 percentage points.