But Barletta faces a formidable foe in Casey, son of the late Gov. Robert P. Casey and himself a former state treasurer and auditor general. Bob Casey (D-PA) on Tuesday - but his margin of victory wasn't exactly awe-inspiring.
U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta won the Republican primary for U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania tonight, besting a lesser-known challenger in Beaver County-based state Rep. Jim Christiana and positioning himself as the Republican Party's hope for ousting longtime Democratic incumbent Bob Casey come November.
Barletta, 62, who rocketed to national prominence thanks to his battles against crime and illegal immigrants while mayor, also was an early and enthusiastic supporter of Donald Trump's bid for the White House, and has enjoyed President Trump's support. These results are unlikely to calm their nerves.
Barletta was supported by President Donald Trump and the state GOP. "Barletta, but if the president has a successful year and his numbers rebound, Barletta could win this race", said Chris Borick, a pollster and political scientist at Muhlenberg College.More news: How to buy a 2018 Champions League final match programme
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court added another wrinkle to the race in February, when it redrew the district boundaries in a way many observers considered favorable to Democrats.
Lamb, who is running in the new 17th District, has no Democratic primary opponent and will meet Republican U.S. Rep Keith Rothfus, who now represents the old 12th District, in November.
Several incumbent candidates who are seeking re-election, like Congressman Dwight Evans, have to fight for re-election in a new district because of the new map.
Pennsylvania could send at least three women Congress next year, breaking the all-male hold on the state's 18-member U.S. House delegation. Scott Wagner defeated businessman and Army veteran Paul Mango for the chance to face off in November against Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, who ran unopposed. Trump won Pennsylvania by less than one percentage point in the 2016 presidential election.More news: OnePlus 6: All we know so far about the upcoming flagship
Within the gubernatorial main, the opposite large Republican race, state Sen. Guy Reschenthaler in the Republican primary. One vote in the Senate can make the difference, and the president is committed to helping me win this race.
Expect Barletta to try to tie Casey to Senate liberals like Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, whose policies are too far left for many Pennsylvania moderates.
Barletta did have kind words for his fellow Republican Christiana, saying the two had exchanged well wishes, and that his opponent offered to help him in the general election campaign.
To the west, Democrats are watching a House primary in Nebraska, where former Rep. Brad Ashford - a conservative "Blue Dog" who lost to Republican Rep. Don Bacon in 2016 - must hold off progressive Kara Eastman before he gets a rematch with Bacon.More news: Iran's foreign minister on diplomatic tour to save nuclear deal