The GOP and Pennsylvania

Posted: October 4, 2022 by chrisharper in Uncategorized

By Christopher Harper

As the country slouches toward the midterm elections, Pennsylvania provides a microcosm of the battle between Democrats and Republicans.

In 2016, the state put Donald Trump over the top by less than 1 percent of the vote. In 2020, Joe Biden got slightly more than 1 percent of the total.

Down the line, the Keystone State mirrors almost every demographic of the nation from ethnic makeup to average income to the severity of poverty.

On the West Coast sits the Democrat stronghold of Pittsburgh. On the East Coast stands Philadelphia, another Democrat hovel. In between, where I live after 17 years in Philly, the flyover country of Pennsylvania votes almost entirely Republican down the ticket.

In the U.S. Senate race, Mehmet Oz has pulled almost even with John Fetterman. Oz takes conservative stands and has Trump’s backing, while Fetterman ranks to the left of Bernie Sanders and George Soros. Oz isn’t a great campaigner, which is why he isn’t running away with the race.

But one of the main reasons Oz has been gaining ground is that Fetterman had a stroke earlier this year and hasn’t convinced many people, including the media, that he can handle the pressure of the U.S. Senate.

Gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano is a stout Trump supporter, but the media have portrayed him as too conservative. Unfortunately, that caricature has left him far behind.

As Common Sense put it recently: “The Democrat is covered in tattoos, favors hoodies, and just had a stroke. Will Pennsylvania send the anti-politician to the Senate?”

Josh Shapiro, an unaccomplished liberal, is likely to follow in the footsteps of our state dictator, Tom Wolf, whose COVID clampdown made him all-powerful for much of the past two-plus years.

Fortunately, the Pennsylvania Senate and House will remain solidly in Republican hands, although the all-Democrat delegations from Pittsburgh and Philly prevent the GOP from overriding vetoes by the governor. The Republicans are pushing for the ability to override executive orders, such as those during COVID, with a majority vote, but legal requirements have prevented such a move until next year.

Also, according to most polls, the U.S. House of Representatives delegation—now nine Republicans and nine Democrats—is likely to add two Republicans into the mix.

Apart from the governor’s race, Pennsylvania looks good for the GOP—perhaps a positive omen for 2024.

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