Republican Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano announced Thursday he will not run for U.S. Senate in 2024, opting instead to continue serving within his state legislature.
“At this time, at this moment, the way things currently are, I am not running for the U.S. Senate seat,” he announced on Facebook Live, although he said he would support the eventual nominee.
Mastriano’s decision comes as a relief to some Pennsylvania Republicans who deemed him too far-right to be the state’s GOP nominee for governor in 2022. His more than 15-point loss to Democrat Josh Shapiro led Republican state Rep. Russ Diamond to write an op-ed May 24, urging Mastriano to “sit out” the race for U.S. Senate.
Doug Mastriano, the far-right state senator who was blown out in Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial contest last fall, announces he will not run for Senate in 2024. https://t.co/AtgTCrQdvE
— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 26, 2023
“Your appearance at the top of the Republican ticket last year undoubtedly contributed to Republicans losing the majority in the PA House, and I fear a repeat of that in 2024, as nothing in the state has changed to mitigate that impact,” Diamond wrote to Mastriano in a text April 13, according to a screenshot shared in his op-ed.
Seemingly taking Diamond’s advice, Mastriano has opted to sit out, telling viewers on Facebook how challenging the fight for the governor-seat was with forces in his own party apparently working against him as a candidate. “Before the Democrats took the first shot, I was taking fire from our own side, from the Republican Party,” Mastriano said.
Mastriano, whom former President Donald Trump has endorsed, lost support from nine GOP leaders within the state following his victory in the primary in May 2022, with all of them throwing their support behind Shapiro. (RELATED: CNN Panel Rips Dems For ‘Meddling’ In GOP Primaries To Boost Pro-Trump Candidates)
With Mastriano declining to seek the seat, some Pennsylvania Republicans are looking to Dave McCormick to challenge Democratic state Sen. Bob Casey for the senate seat. McCormick narrowly lost the Republican primary for the Pennsylvania Senate seat to Mehmet Oz in 2022, and has announced he is open to running again.
“I am seriously considering a run for the U.S. Senate because Bob Casey has consistently made life worse for Pennsylvania families over the past 18 years, and our state deserves better,” McCormick said, according to NBC News.