Sen. Doug Mastriano (R-Pa.) got a boost in the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race on May 14.
Former President Donald Trump endorsed Mastriano over former Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.).
“There is no one in Pennsylvania who has done more, or fought harder, for election integrity than state Senator Doug Mastriano,” Trump said in a statement.
Mastriano will address election issues and will also fight crime, strengthen the U.S. borders, push pro-life policies, defend the Second Amendment, and help the U.S. military and military veterans, Trump added.
“He is a fighter like few others and has been with me right from the beginning, and now I have an obligation to be with him,” Trump said, calling Mastriano “a man who will never let you down.”
Mastriano’s campaign shared the statement.
The campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Barletta quickly responded, saying that he has proven throughout the campaign that he’s the best Republican “to unite the Republican Party and defeat Josh Shapiro.”
Shapiro, Pennsylvania’s attorney general, is expected to win the Democrat nomination for governor because he’s running unopposed.
“I will continue unifying our grassroots conservatives towards our shared goal,” a victory in the general election, Barletta said. He said he expects Trump to endorse him if he emerges from the Republican primary.
Voters will head to the polls for the primaries on May 17.
Former U.S. Attorney Bill McSwain is among the other choices for GOP voters.
Several top Republicans have recently dropped out of the race and endorsed Barletta.
Pennsylvania President Pro Tempore Jake Corman said he made the move “for the greater good of our party,” describing Barletta as “someone who can win in November.”
Former Rep. Melissa Hart (R-Pa.), another candidate, suspended her campaign and called on fellow Republicans to join her in backing Barletta, calling him “a proven leader.”
“We’ve all seen the terrible direction Pennsylvania has taken over the last seven-and-a-half years, and we know that Josh Shapiro would make things even worse,” Barletta said after Hart endorsed him. “I have a history of beating Democrats, having been elected mayor in a heavily Democratic city and defeated a 26-year incumbent Democrat for Congress. There is no question that as the Republican nominee, I can also beat Josh Shapiro, because the people of Pennsylvania know me. I am proven, road-tested, and ready to lead.”
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, is term-limited from running again.