Senate Republican primary candidate David McCormick on Friday conceded to wellness celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz, in the deadlocked race which had gone to a state-mandated recount with fewer than 1,000 votes dividing the pair.
Oz, who was backed by former President Donald Trump, will now square off against Democrat John Fetterman in the Nov. 8 midterm election to replace retiring Republican Senator Pat Toomey.
"I will do my part to try to unite Republicans and Pennsylvanians behind his candidacy, behind his nomination for the Senate," McCormick said.
The race is crucial to Republican hopes of regaining control of a Senate narrowly held by President Joe Biden's fellow Democrats.
The outcome poses a test for Trump's influence over the Republican Party as he mulls a possible third run for president in 2024.
The former president has endorsed over 190 candidates, trying to solidify his status as party kingmaker. His picks have not always prevailed.
Oz and McCormick have both positioned themselves as champions of Trump's populist "America First" agenda.
Fetterman, the state's current lieutenant governor, said on Friday that he “almost died” from the stroke that has kept him off the campaign trail, indicating that his condition was graver than initially suggested.
“I’m not quite back to 100% yet, but I’m getting closer every day,” he said.
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