Trump endorses in Penn. Senate primary for second time; former administration official endorsements are split

Seven candidates are running in the Republican primary election for U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania on May 17, 2022. Senator Pat Toomey (R) is not running for re-election. The candidates who performed best in recent polling and have received the most media attention are David McCormick and Mehmet Oz. The general election will take place on Nov. 8, 2022.

Former President Donald Trump (R) endorsed Oz on April 9, 2022. Trump previously endorsed Sean Parnell in Sept. 2021. Parnell suspended his campaign in Nov. 2021 and endorsed McCormick in Jan. 2022. Between the suspension of Parnell’s campaign and Trump’s endorsement of Oz, several advisors and administration officials made endorsements in the race. Kellyanne Conway, Hope Hicks, Larry Kudlow, Stephen Miller, and Mike Pompeo endorsed McCormick. Ben Carson, Louis Freeh, Rick Perry, Wilbur Ross, and Ryan Zinke endorsed Oz.

McCormick was the CEO of Bridgewater Associates, an investment management firm, from 2017 to Jan. 2022. Before joining Bridgewater in 2009, he served as Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security and as Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs. He graduated from West Point and served in the United States Army during the Gulf War. McCormick’s campaign has focused on economic issues and the relationship between the United States and China.

Oz is an author and former surgeon. He hosted The Dr. Oz Show from 2009 to Jan. 2022 and appeared as a regular guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Oz received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University, and his medical and business degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. Oz’s campaign has portrayed him as a political outsider, with a campaign ad likening him to former Presidents Ronald Reagan and Trump, saying they each started in Hollywood before going to Washington to fight the establishment. Oz has used his background in medicine to highlight disagreements with how the Biden administration handled the COVID-19 pandemic.

Three race ratings outlets rate the race either Toss-up or Tilt Republican. President Joe Biden (D) won Pennsylvania 50% to 49% in the 2020 presidential election. Senator Bob Casey Jr. (D) won re-election 56% to 43% in 2018. Toomey won re-election in 2016 49% to 47%.

Also running in the primary are Kathy Barnette, Jeff Bartos, George Bochetto, Sean Gale, and Carla Sands.