McCormick and Oz in Dead Heat in Pennsylvania Senate Primary

McCormick and Oz in Dead Heat in Pennsylvania Senate Primary

Businessman David McCormick and celebrity surgeon Dr. Mehmet Oz are neck-and-neck in the Republican primary race for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, according to a poll released Thursday.

The poll, conducted by Emerson College and the Hill from March 26 to March 28, found McCormick and Oz each receiving 14 percent support, while a majority of respondents, 51 percent, said they were undecided.

Other candidates in the primary remained in the single digits, including military veteran Kathy Barnette at six percent, former Trump Administration Ambassador to Denmark Carla Sands at six percent, and real estate developer Jeff Bartos at five percent.

The poll was conducted just prior to Oz and McCormick, as well as two other candidates, meeting on stage to debate at a candidate forum that took place Wednesday morning.

Oz, who is best known for hosting the Dr. Oz Show, became a prime target during the event as his opponents questioned his conservatism. “Why is everyone attacking me?” Oz asked at one point during the forum before someone from the audience answered, “Because you’re a liberal.”

Oz’s history has been scrutinized amid his bid for office, and Democrat-aligned positions Oz has taken in the past have been unearthed, such as Oz advocating for gun restrictions and warning of negative health effects related to fracking in a state in which tens of thousands of jobs exist in the natural gas industry. Oz was also found to have ownership in a company fined for employing illegal aliens, and Oz’s dual citizenship in Turkey has also become a source of controversy.

While Oz has sought to appease critics and correct his record, McCormick, a former CEO of one of the world’s largest hedge funds, must work to appeal to middle-class and blue-collar Pennsylvanians after serving at the helm of Bridgewater Associates among Wall Street bigwigs.

Former President Donald Trump has not weighed in on the Republican candidates. Trump had initially backed Sean Parnell in the race before Parnell dropped out to focus on his personal life amid a bitter custody battle. Parnell, an Army veteran, and Purple Heart recipient, eventually went on to endorse McCormick, who is a fellow Army veteran who graduated from West Point and served in Iraq.

The Senate race is expected to be one of the closest in the country, happening in a populous battleground state that Trump lost by just over one point in 2020.

The poll found that Trump’s endorsement could carry significant weight in the Republican primary, showing that if Trump endorsed a candidate, 61 percent of respondents would be more likely to vote for that candidate, while 13 percent would be less likely. Twenty-six percent of respondents said the endorsement would make no difference.

On the Democrats’ side of the race, the poll found Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D) has a wide lead over Rep. Conor Lamb (D-PA). Fetterman, a former Braddock mayor who ran for Senate in 2016 and lost in the primary, received 33 percent compared to Lamb’s ten percent. Democrat Dr. Kevin Baumlin came in just behind Lamb at nine percent, but Baumlin announced Thursday that he would be dropping out of the race. Thirty-seven percent of respondents said they were undecided on a Democrat candidate.

The Republican primary poll was conducted among 372 likely voters and had a margin of error of +/- five percent. The Democrat primary poll was conducted among 471 likely voters and had a margin of error of +/- 4.5 percent.

The primary in Pennsylvania takes place on May 17.

Write to Ashley Oliver at Follow her on Twitter at @asholiver.

Originally Posted on:
[By: Ashley Oliver

Written by:

10,747 Posts

View All Posts
Follow Me :
%d bloggers like this: