Incumbent Gov. Tom Corbett (R-PA) received a boost in his primary campaign against sole challenger, party reformist Bob Guzzardi, as the Republican Party of Pennsylvania has formerly endorsed the Corbett-Jim Cawley ticket as the Republicans’ nomination for Governor and Lieutenant Governor, respectively.
The PA GOP made the announcement last weekend during its winter meeting, and this represents the fourth time the organization has endorsed Corbett for elected office, having twice endorsed Corbett previously for Pennsylvania Attorney General and for Corbett’s successful run for governor four years ago.
The PA GOP’s endorsement marks a solidifying of Corbett’s in the face of flank attacks from Democrats in the General Assembly, who have assailed Corbett for everything from the school funding crisis to the governor’s unwillingness to adopt federal expansion of Medicare.
“The Republican Party of Pennsylvania [has] enthusiastically supported Governor Tom Corbett and Lieutenant Governor,” said Republican Party of Pennsylvania Chairman Rob Gleason. “Since day one, Tom Corbett and Jim Cawley put Pennsylvanians first and deliver the strong leadership we need at this critical time in our history. Our grassroots leaders want to send Tom Corbett and Jim Cawley back to Harrisburg so they can continue to fight for common sense in our government.”
Corbett, who graciously accepted PA GOP’s endorsement, touched on several key accomplishments of the first term of the Corbett Administration.
“Jim and I are honored to once again have the support of the Republican Party of Pennsylvania as we seek re-election this year and are grateful for the grassroots leaders and volunteers of our party for the hard work they have done and will continue to do to deliver a victory in November,” Corbett said. “For the last three years, we have worked to turn Pennsylvania around, cutting wasteful government spending, responsibly balancing our budgets on time and leading with a ‘More Jobs, less Taxes,’ agenda that’s keeping taxes low and putting more Pennsylvanians back to work in the private sector.
“With the help of a growing energy sector, Pennsylvania’s best days are just ahead, and with four more years, we will be able to ensure that our children and grandchildren have the bright future they deserve.”
Gauging the impact of the endorsement is tricky. While poll-watchers don’t think Corbett will have much trouble in the primary, several prominent polls – including one recently conducted by Politico which shows Corbett among the most vulnerable governors up for re-election – Gleason believes the might of his organization, coupled with Corbett’s track record, will be enough to push Corbett through come the fall.
“While the Democrats push an extreme liberal agenda of higher taxes, more government and more ObamaCare, Tom Corbett and Jim Cawley have brought fiscal sanity to Harrisburg. Tom Corbett is creating new jobs, delivering on time budgets and investing more money in our schools than ever before.
“The Republican Party of Pennsylvania has the best grassroots network in the country, and we look forward to reelecting Governor Tom Corbett and Lieutenant Governor Jim Cawley.”