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3/9 Ups & Downs

The 18th Congressional districts candidates trend in opposite directions while TV stations come out ahead, Allentown can move on, and Thornburgh family argues against itself.  See who made this week’s Ups & Downs!
Conor Lamb.  PA-18 Democratic candidate Conor Lamb has gotten a lot of good news this week with Sabato shifting the race to a ‘toss up’ and one poll showing him ahead of Republican Rick Saccone and another showing him within the margin of error.  The news could make next week’s election very interesting.  
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Rick Saccone.  Republican Congressional candidate Rick Saccone took a brutal hit from Republicans for his campaign efforts in the 18th district special election including national Republicans putting the blame squarely on him for a possible loss.
Allentown.  After being found guilty in the federal corruption probe Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski announced his resignation hopefully giving Allentown a chance to move on from the shadow of the scandal while he goes through the appeals process.  
Pittsburgh TV Stations.  This special election is turning into millions of dollars in bonus revenue for them. And since outside groups must pay a higher rate for ads than candidates, the race is even more lucrative.
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PA-12 (now PA-17) Democratic hopefuls. They’ve been running for months to beat Rothfus, but the new map means they’ll likely face Lamb in a primary. If he performs well on Tuesday, it will be difficult for them to overcome him in the primary. Especially if all 4 remain in the race.
The Thornburgh Family.  No matter what happens in the challenge to the state Supreme Court’s Congressional map, a Thornburgh will come out the winner.  Former Governor Dick Thornburgh is pushing for the map to be blocked, while his son David who is head of the Committee of Seventy is pushing for the maps to be upheld.  
Women Candidates. After the deadline to file petitions for state legislative races passed, a total of 141 women field to run for the state House and Senate. That includes 98 Democratic women who filed to run, marking one of the highest numbers in recent years for the party.  
Up-Arrow4-2Down Arrow Ryan Mackenzie.  After declaring for Congress, and getting into a very public spat with fellow state Rep. Justin Simmons over who was more pro-Trump state Rep. Ryan Mackenzie announced he is ending his Congressional campaign to run for the state House. But Mackenzie will no longer take hits over running for two offices at once.
Richard Lazer.  Former Philadelphia Deputy Mayor Richard Lazer announced he will run in the Delco centered 5th Congressional district.  While the county Democratic Party chair wants the seat represented by someone from Delco, the fact that there are 12 candidates in the race from Delco could give Lazer a shot.  
Bonus Up/Down: Every week, PoliticsPA will be including a bonus up or down, that is exclusive to Playbook email subscribers.  To sign up to see the bonus arrow click here.

The tweet of the week goes to Philadelphia Inquirer Reporter Jonathan Tamari for his response to the number of candidates running in the new 5th Congressional district.  

5 Responses

  1. Memo to national Republicans: Pennsylvania voters do not CARE about Nancy Pelosi; she is last week’s fruit salad, moldering in the refrigerator. We do care about jobs, about balancing the federal budget, about a strong military, about curbing illegal immigration (even if that means a border wall), etc. If Pelosi is the general election GOP witchy-witch, Pennsylvania could well send 18 Democrats to Congress.

  2. Robert Yates should get a down arrow. He couldn’t even get on the ballot for Republican State Committee.

  3. Brutal is right. That Politico piece on PA-18 was downright humiliating. The national Republicans are clearly trying to set up a narrative to blame Saccone for a potential loss so they don’t have to acknowledge the national trend. Maybe wait until after a loss to throw your candidate under the bus that hard.

    One particularly interesting aspect is that this is shaping up to be more expensive than all but a small handful of US House races in 2016, and those numbers are for a full cycle. I just saw that national Republican groups plowed $9 million into this race. I’ll say it again: in a district that Trump won by 20 points, even if Saccone wins, unless it is by at least 10 points, then this would be a humiliating, nigh-Pyrrhic and likely short-lived victory presaging what is to come for his party in November.

      1. Maybe the narrative should in a Congressional District where Democrats outnumber Republicans by 70,000 if we run a decent candidate who does not bash the NRA, flag wave for Planned Parenthood and does not support Sanctuary Cities we actually have a chance to win a seat that should have been ours all along.

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