‘It’s the Super Bowl’ Pa. politicians say of the 2022 elections

Pennsylvania Politics

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The 2021 election is in the books, and it was a sleepy little affair compared to what is coming next year. Pennsylvania is often called a battleground state, and the battle for 2022 is already underway.

“I keep calling next year the Super Bowl for all of Pennsylvania,” Pennsylvania Democrats Chairwoman Nancy Patton Mills said. And Super Bowl preparations are already underway to replace Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, who is term-limited, and Republican U.S. Senator Pat Toomey, who is retiring.

Several Republicans have jumped into both races. “The fact that people are banging on our door to run with our label indicates we are healthy and people have confidence in us. I don’t think we’re done with candidates yet. I think you’re going to see more,” Pennsylvania GOP Chairman Lawrence Tabas said.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro is the lone Democrat running for governor. “The field has not been cleared for Josh Shapiro. Josh Shapiro, because he is so strong, has cleared the field. That’s just a reality,” Mills said.

Get daily news, weather, and breaking news alerts straight to your inbox! Sign up for abc27 newsletters here!

Democrats running for Senate seats include an openly gay African American and a woman. Pennsylvanians have never elected either to the Senate. There’s also the lieutenant governor and a moderate congressman in the field.

“I think right now John Fetterman is the candidate to beat in that primary, I don’t care what anyone says,” Tabas said.

“We have commitments from one candidate to the other that they’re not going to be negative. They’re only going to talk about the positive,” Mills said.

No such peace exists between the parties, though. “I think the Republicans are a mess right now,” Mills said.

Democrats will link GOP candidates to Donald Trump, who Mills says has fractured the party: “I know Republicans who have been Republicans their whole lives and can’t support him, are embarrassed by him.”

“Any former President of the United States is always going to have a role,” Tabas said.

Republicans will not disavow the former president but link Democrats to the current president. “He is absolutely our best friend, in fact, we should be making contributions to him,” Tabas said.

Donald Trump and Joe Biden will not be on the ballot in Pennsylvania next year but will likely impact the people who are. There will also be 17 congressional races across the state in new districts that have not yet been drawn.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss