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Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano has won the Republican nomination for Pennsylvania governor, according to the Associated Press, fending off a reported last-ditch effort from state GOP officials who worry he’s too extreme to win a general election.
The AP called the race for Mastriano at 9:51 p.m. Eastern time, with an estimated 45% of the vote counted.
Mastriano held a lead with 42.5% of the vote, followed by Lou Barletta with 22.6% and Bill McSwain with 15.2%.
Mastriano faces Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, the Democratic nominee for governor, in November’s general election.
Incumbent Gov. Tom Wolf (D) was unable to seek reelection due to term limits.
Former President Donald Trump announced on Saturday he was endorsing Mastriano, who already had a large lead in polls. Mastriano was one of Pennsylvania’s loudest voices repeating Trump’s false claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election, and was an attendee at Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally in Washington on January 6, 2021, but says he left before Trump supporters stormed the Capitol. Mastriano has vowed he will require every Pennsylvania voter to re-register if he’s elected governor, one of several policies some Republicans believe make him too extreme to win a general election, along with proposals like a ban on abortions after six weeks and the abolition of property taxes. According to Politico, several top Pennsylvania Republicans mounted an unsuccessful effort over the past week to prevent Mastriano from winning.
“You guys think Ron DeSantis is good? Amateur,” Mastriano said at a recent rally, comparing his conservative bona fides to the Florida governor, who is a favorite among right-wingers, according to NBC News.
Mastriano attended an event called “Patriots Arise for God and Country” last month that featured a video falsely claiming the 9/11 terrorist attacks were a “false flag” operation, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Trump Endorses Hard-Right Doug Mastriano In Pennsylvania’s Gubernatorial Race (Forbes)
A top GOP candidate for governor campaigned at an event promoting QAnon and conspiracy theories about 9/11 (Philadelphia Inquirer)