After launching a run in 2014, Halvorson second try picked up momentum after a series of unflattering stories revealed Shuster’s personal relationship with an airline lobbyist. Rep. Shuster serves as the Chair of the House Transportation Committee.
“I’m deeply humbled by the coming together of voters in both parties for the critical, common goal of rescuing America from the corrupt career politicians who’ve betrayed our conservative values and sold us up the river to corporate lobbyists,” Halvorson said.
He went on to hammer Shuster for his own personal conflicts of interest, as well as those of his father, who went through a strikingly similar episode.
Despite the fact he’ll be on the Democratic side of the ballot, Halvorson maintains he is still a Republican.
“But make no mistake about it, our current struggle isn’t Democrat vs. Republican, it’s Insiders vs. We the People,” he asserted.
Unsurprisingly, Congressman Shuster did not welcome this news.
“By running for Congress as a Democrat, Art Halvorson has proved that he cares about one thing and one thing only – himself,” Rep. Shuster’s campaign stated. “Not only is he betraying Democrats by calling their party Godless while forcing them to accept him as their nominee, but he is also betraying the will of the Republican primary voters that have twice rejected his attempt to get a job in Congress.”
“Whether its selfish Art Halvorson saying offensive things about Democrats or calling the Republican nominee Donald Trump childish and reprehensible two things are clear – Art Halvorson’s Arlen Specter impression is out of touch with our region and he is a soon be a three-time loser to Congressman Bill Shuster, who unlike Art, will always be fighting for the people of the 9th Congressional District.”
It appears from this statement that the Shuster team’s current strategy is to try and convince both Democrats and Republicans that Halvorson does not support either party or their ideals.
The 9th Congressional District consists of all or parts of Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Fayette, Franklin, Fulton, Greene, Huntingdon, Indiana, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland Counties.