HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Republican governor candidate Melissa Hart has dropped out of the primary race and endorsed candidate Lou Barletta.

The former congresswoman’s step away from the race comes two days after Senate Pro Tempore Jake Corman dropped out for a second time and announced his endorsement for Barletta.

During his announcement, Corman said the only way he thinks the Republican party could lose in the fall is to stay divided and nominate someone that can’t possibly win in the fall.

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“As a Republican party, I do think it is time that we coalesce and I would strongly advise, and I am not big on advising other people in their candidacy, that other candidates in this race to think about the same way. What is important is the party itself and our ability to put a candidate forward who can ultimately debate and win in the fall,” Corman said.

The former Republican member of the United States House launched her campaign for the state governor in January 2022. She was the only female in the Republican primary field. During her time in Congress, she was a co-chair of the Republican National Convention.

In a recently published Fox News poll of 1,001 Pennsylvania Republican primary voters, Hart received 4% of the voters’ support. She has received less than 10% of voters’ support in polls in more than one poll released throughout the campaign.

The primary general election for the open Pennsylvania governor seat is on May 17.

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