Republicans are preparing for an uphill battle to unseat three-term Pennsylvania Democratic Sen. Bob Casey Jr. in 2024.
The Washington Examiner reported Monday that the fight for the seat is expected to be one of the most costly and contentious in the country, possibly with control of the upper chamber at stake.
Casey, son of former Gov. Bob Casey Sr., is currently the longest-serving Democratic Senator in the state’s history. Pollsters in the race now favor him due to his strong name recognition and being the incumbent, the report said.
Casey’s GOP opponent could be former Bridgewater executive David McCormick, who lost the 2022 Senate primary race to Dr. Mehmet Oz, whom former President Donald Trump endorsed to face Democrat John Fetterman.
Fetterman came out on top in the general election as the junior senator from the state.
“Dave is thinking very seriously about running,” one source told the Examiner. “Bob Casey is vulnerable — he’s never been given a real fight — and Pennsylvania Democrats know that McCormick would give Casey a serious run for his money.”
While remaining somewhat optimistic, Republicans in the state know the fight will not be easy and that winning is not close to guaranteed.
“It is absolutely going to be a tough fight, there’s no doubt about that,” Sam DeMarco, who chairs the Allegheny County Republican Party, said in the report. “Beating Bob Casey here in a normal year is 50-50 at best. Now, Casey, many people view as this behemoth on the Democrat side, but look at his elections.”
In a story last week the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette said that both candidates would be vulnerable on the issue of China.
According to the report, Casey has worked as a centrist with GOP colleagues in the Senate “several times” on issues related to China, but the Republicans are now saying he is weak in that area of foreign policy because he is up for re-election.
Meanwhile, Democrats are already targeting McCormick for his past statements praising Chinese economic growth and his former hedge fund firm’s $1.25 billion investment fund in that country, the report said.
“It’s a fair bet that Pennsylvanians are going to get a lot about this between now and next November,” J.J. Balaban, a longtime Philadelphia-based Democratic strategist and admaker, told the newspaper.
“Sen. Casey has stood up to China and fought at every opportunity against unfair trade practices and U.S. corporations that invest in China at the expense of American workers,” Maeve Coyle, a spokesperson for the Senate Democrats’ campaign arm, told the Post-Gazette. “Meanwhile, McCormick spent his career enriching himself by managing billions for the Chinese government, even saying just last year he was ‘blessed’ by China.”
Charles Kim ✉
Charles Kim is a general assignment writer for Newsmax and is an award-winning journalist with more than 30 years in the field reporting on news and politics.
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