It's Not Even Close to Being Over in Pennsylvania GOP Senate Race

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

When we last left the saga of the GOP Senate Primary in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania Tuesday, there was a hint that late-arriving mail-in ballots would be the deciding factor, and those would for sure be all counted up on Friday. We would have one, definitive Republican nominee in the fall midterms to back against the current Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D-PA).

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Sad to say, folks, it’s now Friday evening and it’s not over yet, according to AP.

The Associated Press:

Pennsylvania’s Republican primary for an open U.S. Senate seat is too close to call and is likely headed for a statewide recount to decide the winner of the contest between heart surgeon-turned-TV celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz and former hedge fund CEO David McCormick.

A recount would mean that the outcome of the race might not be known until June 8, the deadline for counties to report their results to the state.

Oz, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump, led McCormick by 1,079 votes, or 0.08 percentage points, out of 1,340,248 ballots counted as of 5 p.m. Friday. The race is close enough to trigger Pennsylvania’s automatic recount law, with the separation between the candidates inside the law’s 0.5% margin. The Associated Press will not declare a winner in the race until the likely recount is complete.

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But Politico was ready to call it a done deal Thursday.

“The chances of a recount are 100 percent and no less,” said Josh Novotney, a Pennsylvania-based GOP consultant. “There’s still votes coming in. It will probably get even tighter than it is now, which is almost humanly impossible. Each side will definitely be wanting any slight edge they can get going into a recount.”

They also noted the whispers of a recount meant both campaigns had already started calling in reinforcements of additional legal help or people to act as election observers — or both:

Both Oz and McCormick have enlisted alumni from former President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign to gird themselves for a potential recount. Mike Roman, the director of Trump’s Election Day operations, is helping the McCormick team, according to a source familiar with his efforts. The Oz campaign has brought onboard James Fitzpatrick, who led Pennsylvania’s Election Day operations for Trump.

Wally Zimolong, a Pennsylvania-based attorney, is also working for McCormick. He tweeted Wednesday that he was headed on behalf of the McCormick campaign to Lancaster County, where a number of ballots couldn’t be scanned because of a printing error, “to ensure the integrity of the counting of the mail-in ballots.”

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I also found this tidbit intriguing: Chuck Cooper will be leading McCormick’s stable of legal beagles for any potential recount. “Cooper won Sen. Rick Scott’s (R-Fla.) 2018 recount effort.” Earlier this week, he also represent Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in a campaign finance case before the Supreme Court, as my colleague Spencer Brown at sister publication Townhall reported. Cooper won that case.

As they say, stay tuned.

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