Even with a recount likely in the nail-biter race between Dr. Mehmet Oz and former hedge fund executive David McCormick for the GOP nomination in Pennsylvania's U.S. Senate race, Oz, as the person who remains slightly ahead, should start campaigning now for the general election in November, Rep. Guy Reschenthaler said on Newsmax Friday.
"They have to get campaigning, especially when you have the juggernaut that is John Fetterman that for whatever reason, people don't take him seriously enough," the Pennsylvania Republican said on Newsmax's "Wake Up America." "He's a very formidable candidate. I still think Dr. Oz is the only one that can beat Fetterman in the fall, but going back to the timeline there's going to be an automatic recount because in Pennsylvania if you're under 0.5% there is an automatic recount."
Fetterman, who is the lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania, handily won the Democrat primary, even while in the hospital on Election Day undergoing surgery to have a pacemaker with a defibrillator placed to protect his heart and address the underlying cause of a stroke he suffered last week.
"I'm a big proponent of continuing the campaign because again, the numbers show that Dr. Oz is going to win this race even after the legal battle," said Reschenthaler. "We can't afford to give Fetterman an even larger edge in this critical swing state."
The recount can't start any later than June 1, but has to wrap up by June 7, Reschenthaler pointed out.
"So by June 7, we should have a resolution on this case and hopefully, Dr. Oz can put this legal battle behind him and focus," he said.
At this point, Oz is holding about a 1,200 vote lead over McCormick, but still, the McCormick camp is holding out hope for the thousands of mail-in ballots that are still being counted, as many of them were cast before former President Donald Trump announced he was endorsing Oz.
"McCormick does have a slight advantage on these mail-in ballots," said Reschenthaler. "However, it's just not enough to overtake Dr. Oz. The McCormick camp thinks there are something like 15,000 outstanding ballots [but] if you talk to the secretary of state in Pennsylvania, it looks like there are fewer than 5000 outstanding ballots."
McCormick is also focused on Allegheny County, where Pittsburgh is located, as he believes he has an advantage there, but in the areas that have not yet been counted, there are more blue-collar, working-class neighborhoods, where Oz has the advantage, Reschenthaler said.
"I would predict that at best, McCormick will be at a 50-50 break on the balance coming from Allegheny County," he added.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania is not like Virginia, Reschenthaler cautioned, and will not see a "huge red wave."
"This is going to be hard-fought," he said. "We can't cede any time to the Democrats. And that's why we need to keep the pressure on the left to make sure we win this election in the fall."
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