While he’s often described as a political newcomer, Smith has some political experience at the local level. “In the 70s I ran one time as Plum Creek Township supervisor here in Armstrong County.”
He won that seat and served one term. “I finished out a term. … After that I had these businesses that I was wanting to build and other people stepped up.”
As for the U.S. Senate race, Smith is considered an underdog, but predicted Casey’s poll numbers will go down “once we get his record out there.” (FLASHBACK: Casey to Santorum: I did you a favor by beating you)
The Republican wouldn’t reveal how much he plans to self-fund his campaign, but said: “I want to raise as much as possible. Fundraising is going very well, and we won’t put in any more than we have to. But we will be funded.”
“We have a little bit of history with us too,” he said. “There has not been a Democratic United States Senator re-elected in Pennsylvania in over 50 years.”
Smith says he hasn’t wanted to run for the Senate for very long, and admits he still is wrapping his head around the fact that he’ll be on the ballot this fall.
“If you had told me 11 months ago that I would be talking to you as the Republican candidate for the United States Senate in Pennsylvania,” Smith said, “I would’ve said, ‘No, I’m not.’”