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Trump-backed candidate Doug Mastriano wins GOP primary for Pennsylvania governor

State Sen. Doug Mastriano was projected to win Pennsylvania’s Republican gubernatorial primary Tuesday in a win for Donald Trump.

Trump opted to back Mastriano, who was already leading in the polls, over former Rep. Lou Barletta — a longtime supporter — and former Philadelphia US Attorney William McSwain.

Some Keystone State Republicans, however, fear the former president’s preferred candidate is too radical to win the November general election against Democrat Josh Shapiro.

“There is no one in Pennsylvania who has done more, or fought harder, for Election Integrity than State Senator Doug Mastriano,” Trump said in his endorsement announcement Saturday. “He has revealed the Deceit, Corruption, and outright Theft of the 2020 Presidential Election, and will do something about it.”

Mastriano organized bus trips to Washington for Trump supporters to attend the “Stop the Steal” rally that precipitated the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol riot, and was spotted in video footage walking with his wife through breached barricades.

During the campaign, Mastriano has pledged to require voters to “re-register” to vote — even though that’s barred by the National Voter Registration Act and likely violates significant protections under federal, and possibly state, law.

Doug Mastriano is Pennsylvania’s Republican gubernatorial candidate.
Getty Images/Michael M. Santiago
Democratic candidate for Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro
Mastriano will go head-to-head with the Democrat candidate Josh Shapiro in November.
Joseph Kaczmarek/Shutterstock

“We’re going to start all over again,” Mastriano, who has barred reporters from his campaign events, said at a recent debate. He has also been subpoenaed by the House committee investigating the Capitol riot following his efforts to name a slate of alternate Electoral College electors in Trump’s favor.

The only drama in the Democratic primary came when Shapiro, the state attorney general who sought the nomination unopposed, announced Tuesday that he had contracted a mild case of COVID-19 that was forcing him from the campaign trail.

Gov. Tom Wolfe, a Democrat elected in 2014, is unable to run for reelection due to term limit restrictions.

With AP wires

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