The Delaware Valley may be trending Democratic, but that did not stop the nation’s top Republican from coming to Chester County to rally the GOP troops.
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel revved up a crowd of Republican activists Saturday morning at the Desmond Hotel in Malvern. They gathered to knock on doors for U.S. Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz and Guy Ciarrocchi, the GOP challenger to incumbent Rep. Chrissy Houlahan. Her message: Vote Republican in Pennsylvania and fire Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Chuck Schumer from their leadership posts in Washington.
Oz, who appears to be closing the polling gap with his opponent, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, continued his campaign focus on the crime issue.
“I was in Philadelphia at a prayer vigil in Olney for a murder that happened, last year, 561 murders, the worst of any major city. Shocking,” Oz said. While he was there, someone told him it was easier to find fentanyl than baby formula.
“I was stunned,” he said. “She was right. How could the land of opportunity, the land of plenty, leave people with fentanyl and no baby formula?”
He told the group it was important to knock on doors and “get people excited” about what Republican candidates represent.
“You’re talking about changing the lives of lots of people around you,” said Oz. “There are many that love this country passionately, and see it as the land of opportunity, the land of plenty, but it no longer seems to represent that,” Oz said. “My dad was an immigrant who grew up with a dirt floor. He didn’t have a [political] party. When I was 8 years old, I asked him what party are we going to be. And he looked around and he said, ‘You know what? We’re going to be Republicans…Because Republicans have better ideas.’”
“Here’s my commitment to you: We have plans that work for the economy.”
Ciarrocchi called out President Joe Biden’s energy policy, an important topic in Pennsylvania.
“It’s amazing watching the president as gas prices go up and people are in trouble,” he said. “As he flies around to the other side of the world looking for energy. It’s like a game. It’s right under our feet.”
“So, we have the solution. We will make America energy independent,” he said.
Ciarrocchi also used the opportunity to tout the GOP’s message of hope. “We’re here today because we still believe in the
“All of us that are running are here today for one reason, we still believe in the American dream,” he said. “We offer hope. We offer solutions. We can fix the mess they created.
“We will unleash our small businesses to revive our economy. We will support our police officers. We will fight crime. We will make sure every person feels safe to go out and live and work. We will restore the rule of law. We know that parents are the bedrock of the family and the bedrock of the community. Under our watch, when Sen. Oz and I go to Washington the Attorney General of the United States will never, ever threaten parents with using the FBI again.”
Former state Rep. Duane Milne came to support Oz and Ciarrocchi. Oz is the “best-qualified candidate,” said Milne. And Ciarrocchi brings “a tremendous world of experience” and “will make an excellent congressman.”
Republican Committeeman Dave Sommers, of West Goshen, said, “People are excited to support conservative candidates.”
Elizabeth Hyde, who traveled from Montgomery County to attend, said Oz is “a successful, smart man who has his heart in the right direction. I think he’s sincere and his values align with mine. We need more doctors in the Senate since the healthcare system and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) are such a big part of the economy.”
The event was followed by a training session for Young Republicans and other volunteers who were going to hand out campaign literature.
Ciarrocchi headed out to Tredyffrin Township to knock on doors and talk to potential voters. Most of the residents he spoke with were friendly, he said.
Like Oz, he talked about the crime issue and its impact on local communities, including a carjacking at a Target in Devon, an armed robbery at Whole Foods in Tredyffrin, and a stabbing at Bertucci’s on Lancaster Avenue in Wayne. He said the CVS drug store in East Goshen was also held up.
“We should not be blasé to carjackings or a robbery or a stabbing,” he told Delaware Valley Journal.
And grab-and-go shoplifters are targeting stores like Lowes, Home Depot, and Walmart, Ciarrocchi said. Clerks are being trained when to try to stop them and when not to.
Crime is “not an academic discussion,” he said. But, he added, “This can be stopped.”