(The Center Square) — Three candidates have emerged as Republican leaders for a U.S. Senate seat ahead of the Pennsylvania primary next week.
Voters on May 17 will choose from among seven GOP candidates. The top five candidates are Dr. Mehmet Oz, military veteran Kathy Barnette, businessman David McCormick, former lieutenant governor nominee Jeff Bartos and former US ambassador to Denmark Carla Sands.
the last poll of the Trafalgar group has Oz at 24.5%, Barnette at 23.3%, McCormick at 21.6%, Bartos at 7.2% and Sands at 6.5%. Lawyers George Bochetto and Sean Gale are also in the running, but vote less than 5%. In a Franklin & Marshall College poll published last week, Oz leads at 18%, followed by McCormick at 16% and Barnette at 12%; the others are at 5% or less.
The Senate seat is currently held by Republican Pat Toomey, who is retiring, leaving the primary field open. In the Democratic primaryvoters choose between Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman, US Representative Conor Lamb, State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta and Jenkintown Councilwoman Alex Khalil, with Fetterman clearly the poll leader.
For an overview of Republican candidate politics, The Center Square took a look at their websites.
Dr. Mehmet Oz
Oz’s celebrity status contributed to his name recognition for getting into the race and taking an early lead in the polls. Former President Donald Trump gave his endorsement, which boosted poll ratings slightly. “Dr. Oz seeks to rebuild the middle layers of society — institutions like family and community — that have been hollowed out by failed policies, narrow thinking, and toxic culture wars,” his website says. He wants to promote energy independence in Pennsylvania and wants to overturn “authoritarian regulations”, grow the economy and stop illegal immigration and reform health care by lowering prescription drug prices. He is anti-abortion, supporter of 2nd amendment, and wants to again encourage volunteerism among the public in the name of service.
Barnette offers voters a day one commitment for how she will serve as a senator, as she will protect individual liberty and basic rights of speech, gun rights, free and fair elections, and oppose civil forfeiture. She is anti-abortion, wants to protect national sovereignty by tackling illegal immigration, restore energy independence and fight corruption. She also wants to tackle “stagnant income and government-imposed wealth inequality” by keeping inflation low and defining the role of the Federal Reserve as a stabilizer for the dollar.
McCormick focuses heavily on economic issues: his top three campaign issues are growing the country’s economy, resisting China, and establishing American energy independence. That means cutting taxes and regulations, controlling inflation, moving supply chains out of China, rebuilding American manufacturing, and growing Pennsylvania’s energy industry. He also wants to stop illegal immigration, rebuild the military, reduce crime in cities and promote voter ID requirements for election integrity. He is anti-abortion and a supporter of the 2nd amendment.
Bartos maintains that he is a fighter who seeks to restore “hope and opportunity to all Pennsylvanians.” He promotes economic policies to make home ownership, health care, and education more affordable, calling them staples of middle-class life.
Sands’ platform leads with her call for America-first policies to expand job opportunities and protect freedom of speech and religion. She wants to promote energy dominance and increase Pennsylvania’s natural gas production, fight inflation and the reckless spending of the Biden administration, whose agenda she calls socialist, and protect the 2nd Amendment. She also wants to build a border wall to stop illegal immigration, pledges to always vote to defund the police, and is anti-abortion.