Election Day roundup: Pennsylvania US Senate, governor races

Tony Romeo
November 06, 2018 - 4:00 am
Bucks County Congressional Race

HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — Voters in Pennsylvania will be casting ballots Tuesday for the U.S. Senate and the governor of Pennsylvania, among other races.

A lot has happened since the midterm election season began, so review below the top races across the state.

Pennsylvania governor

They are at opposite sides of the political spectrum, but incumbent Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and Republican challenger Scott Wagner do have some things in common: They are both from York County, and both are wealthy businessmen. 

Wagner made history in 2014 when he won a state Senate seat as a write-in candidate. Trailing by wide margins in most polls, Wagner will need a similar feat if he is to pull off a win Tuesday.

Wagner has struggled to get traction, however, and in the lone face-to-face debate of the campaign, the moderator, "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek, became the story

Wagner’s frustrations boiled over in mid-October when he posted a video vowing to “stomp all over (Wolf’s) face with golf spikes.” 

Barring a stunning upset win, that may be the event for which Wagner’s campaign ends up being best remembered.

U.S. Senate

In addition to the race for governor, the other marquee contest on the statewide Pennsylvania ballot is for a seat in the U.S. Senate. 

Like the race for governor, which features two candidates from York County, the candidates for U.S. Senate also hail from the same region of the state — in this case, the northeast. 

The Republican nominee is Lou Barletta, a congressman who first made his political mark as the mayor of Hazleton in Luzerne County. He first rose to prominence over the issue of immigration while serving as mayor.

Not too far up I-81, Lackawanna County is the homestead of the Casey political family. Incumbent Democrat Sen. Bob Casey, a former state auditor general and son of a popular two-term governor, is seeking his third term in the Senate.

Perhaps the biggest controversy in the campaign for the Senate seat has involved campaign ads on health care. Casey is a vocal critic of President Donald Trump, while Barletta was one of Trump’s earliest backers. 

Barletta has trailed Casey in both fundraising and polls.