Significant speculation was occurring that former Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Hazelton), defeated in the 2018 Pennsylvania US Senate race, might attempt a congressional comeback by entering the special election to replace resigned Rep. Tom Marino (R-Williamsport). Mr. Barletta’s previous 11th District contained about 11% of the new 12th District’s constituency.
Over the weekend, Mr. Barletta ended such talk by announcing that he would not become a candidate in the soon-to-be-scheduled special Republican convention that will choose a nominee for the May 21st special election. In the race are GOP state Reps. Fred Keller and Jeff Wheeland. College professor Marc Friedenberg is the lone announced Democrat. The Republicans are favored to retain the district. President Trump carried the seat with a 66-30% margin in 2016.
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