Takeaways from Tuesday’s U.S. primary elections -Breaking
WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – The matches-ups in high-profile U.S. congressional races and gubernatorial elections in November’s midterm election began in Pennsylvania on Tuesday.
We have some quick takeaways for the primary election:
ABORT ON THE BALLOT
In the Pennsylvania governorship race, abortion rights will play a major role.
Democrat Josh Shapiro, the state’s attorney general, ran unopposed in the Democratic primary in his bid to replace Democratic Governor Tom Wolf and has vowed to protect abortion rights against a Republican-controlled General Assembly that has proposed a series of anti-abortion bills.
“They’re coming for all your rights, and I’ll be there to defend you every single step of the way,” Shapiro said at an abortion-rights rally in Philadelphia this month.
Doug Mastriano of the State Senate was elected as the winner from a packed Republican primary. His so-called “heartbeat” bill would have abortions banned after six weeks. Recently, Mastriano called abortion genocide.
A bill was introduced by the state legislature to stop the state Supreme Court declaring abortion a legal right following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that could overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision’s nationwide protections. This would allow the legalization issue to be relegated back to individual states.
Joseph Foster, chairman of the Democratic Party in Montgomery County, the state’s largest suburban county, said Democrats will spend considerable time reminding voters ahead of November’s elections that the only thing standing in the way of strict abortion laws is a Democrat in the governor’s mansion.
“If a Republican wins a governor seat, we are in deep trouble,” Foster said.
FETTERMAN FOLLOWS THE WAY
John Fetterman was the eccentric, hoodie-wearing, lieutenant governor from Pennsylvania who defeated Conor Lamb, U.S. Democratic Senate primary opponent. This was despite an illness that forced Fetterman to withdraw from the campaign trail during the final weekend of the race.
The road ahead is even more difficult.
It doesn’t matter who wins, the Republican U.S. Senate Primary will see a flood of advertisements this summer calling Fetterman both a “socialist”, and a radical in the style of Bernie Sanders.
Fetterman supported Sanders’ 2016 presidential bid but has since sought to broaden his appeal, said Mike Mikus, a Democratic strategist in Pittsburgh.
Analysts say Fetterman won on Tuesday because of his populist image that attracted progressives and moderates. He avoided ideological mud-slinging like it has been in other Democratic primaries.
He is particularly keen to get to the working-class voters of those areas that Donald Trump, Republican presidential candidate for 2020, won with 35 percent or more.
While vote count is still underway, Fetterman had the most dominant leads in rural counties, where he often led Lamb (a moderate Congressman) by over 50 points.
His rural appeal might allow him the opportunity to divert votes away from his Republican opponent. However, Fetterman must win as Democrats do in Pennsylvania, according to Jacob Rubashkin who is an election analyst in Washington.
Fetterman needs to first assure voters of his good health following a stroke. His campaign said a procedure on Monday to implant a pacemaker was successful and that Fetterman was on track for a “full recovery.”