Doug Mastriano defeated Lou Barletta, Bill McSwain, Dave White, and five other candidates to win the May 17, 2022, Republican primary for Governor of Pennsylvania. Incumbent Tom Wolf (D) was term-limited.
The primary featured the most candidates in a Pennsylvania Republican gubernatorial primary since at least 1978.
The state Republican Party did not endorse a candidate this year.
Mastriano, a U.S. Army veteran and state representative, focused on his opposition to Covid-19 measures and said he would defend election integrity. Mastriano said fraud was prevalent in the 2020 election and criticized McSwain for not supporting Mastriano’s efforts to investigate the results of the election. On February 15, 2022, the U.S. House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol breach subpoenaed Mastriano, citing his presence outside the Capitol on the day of the breach and statements he made relating to the selection of delegates to the Electoral College. On May 14, 2022, former President Donald Trump (R) endorsed Mastriano.
Barletta represented Pennsylvania’s 11th Congressional District from 2011 to 2019 and served as mayor of Hazleton from 2000 to 2010. Barletta campaigned on his public service, saying, “I actually have a record that people can look at, so you won’t have to guess what I’ll do tomorrow. You can see what I did yesterday.” At an April 27 debate, Barletta criticized McSwain for having been a registered Democrat. In May 2022, Jake Corman III and Melissa Hart withdrew from the race and endorsed Barletta. Corman’s and Hart’s names remained on the May primary ballot because the deadline to withdraw had already passed.
McSwain served in the U.S. Marine Corps and worked as a private attorney before former President Trump appointed him U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. McSwain emphasized his work as a U.S. Attorney, saying, “What the other candidates in this race know about crime, they read in the newspaper. I’m the only one who has actually done something about it.” McSwain criticized Mastriano for voting for Act 77, a law that expanded vote-by-mail in Pennsylvania, and accused Barletta of supporting higher gas taxes. McSwain criticized White for receiving campaign contributions from union political action committees.
White served on the Delaware County Council and worked as a steamfitter before founding a mechanical contractors company. White said his labor background would help him attract former Democratic blue-collar voters to the GOP. “That’s what differentiates me from the other candidates, is that I’m the only one that’s capable of doing that,” White said. White highlighted a statement from Trump in which the former president told voters not to support McSwain.
Also running in the primary were Joe Gale, Charlie Gerow, and Nche Zama.
Carrie DelRosso won the Republican primary for Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania. DelRosso defeated John Brown, Jeff Coleman, Teddy Daniels, Russell Diamond, Chris Frye, James Jones, Rick Saccone, and Clarice Schillinger. Candidates for governor and lieutenant governor in Pennsylvania run in separate primaries for their party’s nomination and then form a joint ticket.