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domingo, 25 de marzo de 2018

Republican Rep. Ryan Costello announces he won’t seek re-election

With many political pundits suggesting that a big blue wave will overcome this year’s midterm elections, several Republican congressmen have announced their retirement in recent months.

Now, with a new, court-ordered district map that heavily benefits Democrats having been drawn in Pennsylvania, things are looking even more bleak for GOP representatives like Rep. Ryan Costello (R-Penn.), who has become the latest Republican to announce that he will not seek re-election this fall, according to City & State PA.

This comes weeks just weeks before the May primary election in the state.

Costello drops out

Costello’s announcement comes as somewhat of a surprise to many Pennsylvanians, as the representative had just filed a petition on Tuesday to run for another term in the state’s 6th congressional district.

But according to insiders, Costello met on Friday with several top Republicans, including state party chair Val DiGiorgio and former 6th District Congressman Jim Gerlach, who he reportedly told that he will not undergo the difficult and costly reelection fight. Instead, Costello plans to head back to the private sector.

This likely comes in direct response to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision to redraw district lines in the state. Costello described the high court’s decision as “a politically corrupt process,” and called for the impeachment of the presiding justices in February.

He told reporters:

I thought the [state] Supreme Court would try to pretend or disguise their partisanship. But, in terms of my seat, it becomes very obvious it was a political power play. It’s known that the justices were funded by liberal forces. This is what they paid for, I guess.

Costello’s campaign spokesperson, Vincent Galko, has yet to comment on the situation.

A major blow

Another likely factor in Costello’s decision was the recent Republican loss in Pennsylvania’s 18th congressional district. Earlier this month, Republican candidate Rick Saccone conceded to Democrat Conor Lamb after a week of recounts.

Many see these departures from GOP representatives as a bad sign for things to come, especially as the 18th district has historically been considered a deep red one: Trump won it by 20 points in the 2016 presidential election.

Additionally, Costello’s late decision not to run has put Republicans in an, especially difficult position, as there is a shortage of alternative candidates — the deadline to petition to run has passed. Now, only Greg McCauley, a local lawyer, has filed the signatures necessary to run as a Republican candidate.

Meanwhile, Chrissy Houlahan, a veteran, and a former business leader is the Democrat’s nominee for the 6th district.

The odds certainly seem to be stacked against Republicans in the upcoming midterms, especially in Pennsylvania. Democrats need to net just 24 seats to regain control of the House — so it will be as important as ever for Republicans to get out and vote this November.