PENNSYLVANIA – Despite pleas from national Republicans to stay out of primaries, Donald Trump waded into the PA GOP Senate primary with an endorsement of failed congressional candidate Sean Parnell. Pennsylvania Democratic Party Spokesperson Jack Doyle issued the following statement following news of the endorsement:
“Donald Trump’s endorsement has ensured Pennsylvania’s already messy GOP Senate primary will spiral further out of control. Instead of focusing on the issues that matter most to voters in our commonwealth, this field of failed political candidates’ top priority is taking swipes at each other and trying to appease the most extreme, out-of-touch voices in their political party.”
Fast facts to know about the race:
- It has been a “summer of worry” among Republican insiders in Pennsylvania, who are increasingly anxious that the weak GOP field in the Senate race could “blow it” in 2022.
- Weak Q2 fundraising reinforced that the GOP primary “lacks a standout candidate” — failed lieutenant governor candidate Jeff Bartos and failed congressional candidate Sean Parnell “were outdone by the far lesser-known Kathy Barnette” and Parnell “couldn’t translate his campaign launch into big money.”
- A major Philadelphia Inquirer investigation highlighted failed congressional candidate Kathy Barnette’s early role in the promotion of election conspiracies and how she was able to leverage the ensuing attention from prominent conspiracy theorists like Mike Lindell and Michael Flynn, becoming the top Q2 GOP fundraiser in one of the country’s most critical Senate races.
- The race also features Carla Sands, a Trump mega-donor and former ambassador who spent hundreds of thousands backing Trump’s presidential runs and whose immense personal wealth could make her a significant factor in this race.
- Former Arlen Specter aide Craig Snyder recently entered the race after voicing concern that “a MAGA extremist” would provide “an unacceptable choice” to general election voters in PA.
- Retiring Senator Pat Toomey warned the GOP field against running “on allegiance to a man” after witnessing the “Super MAGA” primary playing out.