US News

Casey Launches Re-Election Bid for Fourth Term in Pennsylvania

Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) announced on April 10 his run for a fourth term in the Senate, bringing the force of incumbency and strong name recognition to his party’s defense in the presidential swing state.

Currently, Casey is the longest-serving Democratic senator in Pennsylvania’s history. The lawmaker’s decision likely offers his party an assist in advance of the tricky 2024 Senate contest.

Democrats, with a razor-thin majority in the Senate, go into the 2024 election tasked with defending incumbents in red states such as Montana, Ohio, and West Virginia, as well as in multiple battleground states.

Casey has consistently portrayed himself as standing up to corporate special interests and stated that there is more that can be done to reduce the cost of living for working families, including child care and prescription medications.

Republican Opponent

The National Republican Senatorial Committee, the campaign branch of the Senate Republicans, has already come after the moderate Democrat for voting in favor of projects by President Joe Biden that they claim have exacerbated inflation and threatened Social Security and Medicare.

Republicans do not have an extensive bench of politicians to challenge Casey, but they do have one prospective top-tier candidate: former hedge fund CEO David McCormick, who lost the Republican Senate nomination to Dr. Mehmet Oz by a razor-thin margin in 2022.

McCormick, backed by party leaders, is a distinguished Gulf War veteran who graduated from West Point, earned a doctorate from Princeton, served in the highest echelons of then-President George W. Bush’s administration, and led one of the world’s largest hedge funds.

He also has huge finances and ties throughout politics, industry, and government to attract endorsements and campaign contributions, but none of it was enough to defeat Oz, the Donald Trump-backed candidate who lost the general election to Democrat John Fetterman.

McCormick may face a tough primary if he runs with State Sen. Doug Mastriano having indicated he may run and believes he would win a primary.

Mastriano, who former President Donald Trump backed, lost the governor’s contest last year with a hard-right campaign.

Casey’s history on the abortion debate has sparked controversy as his father, former Governor Bob Casey, Sr., was against abortion rights and signed a law leading to Planned Parenthood v. Casey, considered a landmark abortion case.

When that case was heard, the Supreme Court upheld Roe in the case in 1992, but they let the states add some restrictions to the procedure.

Casey, who is known as a pro-life Democrat, moved to back a bill last year to write abortion rights into federal law after it became clear that the Supreme Court would overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling in 2022.

Casey has said that he does not support a total ban on abortion. He thinks that lawmakers should work to reduce the number of abortions and unintended pregnancies in their states and do more to help women and families.

His re-election campaign sounds like what many believe Biden’s message for a second term may sound.

The veteran lawmaker is pointing to landmark bills made by a Congress controlled by the Democrats, including those to increase spending on infrastructure like airports and high-speed internet, revive a domestic semiconductor industry, subsidize hydrogen fuel plants, and lower the cost of drugs for Medicare recipients.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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