A group of Republicans flocked to the Towne House in Media Thursday to kick off the general election campaign for the GOP’s statewide candidates.

In the two days since the primary, the GOP hopefuls have made appearances in Erie, Washington County, Altoona, Harrisburg, Wilkes-Barre, and Delaware County.

U.S. Senate candidate Dave McCormick called out the Biden administration on energy and foreign policy.

“I will be a senator for all of you, one who fights for an economy that works for working people,” said McCormick. “Who fights for Pennsylvania to make sure our economy can prosper by exporting natural gas and pipeline reform and drilling, having the opportunity for an offshore port that gets that natural gas out of the ground and creates great-paying jobs. Helps our security. Helps our environment. That’s the vision I have for Pennsylvania.”

President Joe Biden has ordered a “pause” on LNG exports, and on Thursday his administration announced draconian new carbon emissions rules for new natural-gas-fired power plants.

“We deserve better than the leadership we saw in Afghanistan,” he added. “We deserve better than the Chinese surveillance balloon. We deserve better than when American troops are being attacked 160 times last year in the Middle East with very little response.”

(From left) Delaware County Congressional candidate Alfeia Goodwin, Montgomery County Commissioner Tom DiBello, Treasurer Stacy Garrity, Dave McCormick, Sen. Tracy Pennycuick, DA Dave Sunday, Delco GOP Chair Frank Agovino, and Auditor General Tim DeFoor.

“When you look abroad, things may be even scarier,” said McCormick, who noted that he went to Israel with his wife, Dina, to assess the aftermath of the Hamas Oct. 7 terror attack that sparked the Gaza war. “We saw first-hand the brutality, the viciousness, the pure evil that essentially the genocide that took place on Oct. 7.”

“It’s not just Israel,” said McCormick. “It’s focused on the West. And the original sin is the $100 billion that was given to Iran by President Obama and President Biden, and the deciding vote in 2015, the deciding vote, was a guy named Bob Casey. We need to be stronger. We deserve better.”

McCormick brought in some local political firepower, too.

State Sen. Tracy Pennycuick (R-Montgomery) rebutted some of the attacks Democrats have made against the GOP nominee.

“For those who think Dave McCormick is not a Pennsylvanian: seven generations. Just let that sink in for a second. I’ve been here in Pennsylvania for 20 years…Not only did he bus tables, but he also worked those jobs delivering papers and trimming Christmas trees when he was a kid.”

Pennycuick, a former Army helicopter pilot, also touted McCormick’s military experience, noting he’s a West Point graduate who also served in the Army. “He served his country, not only in combat but at the Department of Treasury.”

When people criticize McCormick for working with China while CEO of a hedge fund, “I say, ‘Thank God. Because we need somebody who knows what our enemy looks like, talks like, and sounds like,’” Pennycuick added.

York County District Attorney Dave Sunday is running for attorney general. He talked about serving in the Navy and worked his way through college and law school. While in the Navy, he participated in operations to counter drug smugglers.

“I would never imagine in 30 years, I’d be fighting that battle at home, but the drugs would be even more deadly, fentanyl, coming into our community over an open border. It’s a battle we have to win.

“I view the world through the lens of a father and a husband, and I’m definitely afraid of the world my son has to grow up in.”

A prosecutor for 16 years, he touted crime reduction during his tenure as DA.

“Crime is down 41 percent, gang violence is down 80 percent from 2022 to 2023, homicides are down 75 percent, opioid overdose deaths are down 26 percent, whereas they’ve gone up 15 percent around the state. And the way we did that was working as a community, working with police, supporting police, working with the faith-based community, with schools, going after it, being aggressive,” Sunday said. “Doing what we can to attack the supply of illegal drugs coming into our community and also the demand.”

Incumbent Treasurer Stacy Garrity, also an Army veteran, said she is running on her record.

“Since 2021, my office has done a lot, returning record amounts of unclaimed property, $274,000; over 400 military medals to veterans and their families, including 10 purple hearts.” She expanded the college savings program, stood for our veterans all across the commonwealth, and stood “for our greatest ally in the Middle East, Israel.”

“Our great slate of candidates gets things done,” said Garrity. “That is why the Democrats are running all over the place, calling us extremists. ‘Imagine the nerve of those Republicans to let you keep your own money. And decide how to best raise your family. And fight to keep government spending under control!’”

Incumbent Auditor General Timothy DeFoor said his duty is to the taxpayers. He advocated for a financial literacy program in high schools that will take effect in the 2026-27 school year.

“I care about this commonwealth and the entities that we audit. More importantly, I care about the future of this commonwealth,” he said.

Lawrence Tabas praised the statewide candidates and said Republican voter registration is rising.

“Ten years ago, the Democrats out-registered us in Pennsylvania by 1.4 million voters,” said Tabas. “On April 6, 2024, the deficit was down to 396,000. This year alone, 28,000 Democrats and independents switched registration to Republican.”

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