What to watch in the Pennsylvania special election

14 Marcha, 2018, 04:14 | Author: Kelly Blake
  • Saccone is running in a tight race for the vacated seat of Congressman Tim Murphy against Conor Lamb

County election officials are estimating turnout of above 20 percent and potentially above 30 percent in some counties before polls closed at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

At a rally for Saccone on Saturday night in the heart of the district, which stretches from the suburbs of Pittsburgh to the border with West Virginia, Trump laid out the stakes in Tuesday's vote.

"The Democrats are trying their best". It would follow Democratic victories previous year in a special Senate election in solidly Republican Alabama, as well as wins in Virginia, New Jersey and a handful of state races in other parts of the country. An NRCC radio ad running through the election reminds voters that Trump called Saccone "a great guy".

"Saccone also told Bartiromo that, "[Trump] needs some help down there, he is getting beat up in Washington from the media, from the bureaucracy and from Hollywood".

"I've talked to so many of these on the left, and they have a hatred for our president".

President Donald Trump dominated the district in 2016 and has offered his backing to Saccone.

President Donald Trump isn't the only candidate tweeting for his preferred candidate in a western Pennsylvania special congressional election. When the Republican candidate's campaign was on life support, and party leaders were calling for him to drop out, Trump continued to publically back Moore even as the allegations mounted. Statewide in Pennsylvania, a state Trump narrowly won in 2016, his approval rating is now just 42 percent, according to the Gallup poll.

"They've gerrymandered this worse than the gerrymandering they were complaining about", Saccone said. He'll need plenty of voters like Brett Gelb, a 48-year-old fire technician who cast his ballot for Saccone in Lamb's home precinct.

But Murphy, who espoused strong anti-abortion views, resigned last fall amid revelations of an extramarital affair in which he urged his lover to get an abortion when they thought she was pregnant. And he embraces unions, highlighting Saccone's anti-labor record at the statehouse - a noticeable deviation from Murphy's status as a union-friendly Republican.

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Just how anxious are Pennsylvania Republicans about this race?

Tuesday's election, then, carries little threat to Trump in the sense that it could swing the balance of power in the House, opening a path to his impeachment. In 2016, Trump won 2.97 million of the popular vote in Pennsylvania to Hillary Clinton's 2.92 million. Jobs and wages up.

"He's going to vote the party line. I don't know if we're ready - I don't know if this country's ready for it", Trump said. Trump endorsed Saccone in January, and outside Republican groups have spent more than $10 million on the race in support of Saccone, who's weak fundraising numbers have seen him outraised by Lamb by almost five-to-one in the first seven weeks of the year.

And when these less liberal Democrats make it to Congress, they still vote with their party the vast majority of the time. Saccone is a former Air Force officer in his fourth term in the Pennsylvania state Legislature. He also ran firmly opposed to Nancy Pelosi being the Democratic leader.

"This is a very tough environment for Republicans", said Corry Bliss of the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), which has raised $114.8 million in the 2018 election cycle and was sending out fundraising emails on behalf of Lamb as late as Monday afternoon, reported just $312,500 in outside spending on the race, whereas the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) spent over $3.5 million.

While Saccone has led most polls leading up to Tuesday, recent numbers suggest a blue surge could continue the small pattern of Democratic upsets in red strongholds.

The White House did much more for Saccone, sending in Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, and White House advisers Kellyanne Conway and Ivanka Trump.

The victor replaces Republican Tim Murphy, who resigned in October amid a sex scandal.


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