Republican businessman Scott Wagner dealt a stunning blow to both Democrats and Republicans in Pennsylvania by becoming the first person ever to win a state Senate seat as a write-in candidate. Many are now wondering if the election has some national implications for the 2014 midterm elections.
The tea party candidate defeated both of his party-endorsed opponents, Republican Ron Miller and Democrat Linda Small. He received 48 percent of the vote to Small’s 26 percent and Miller’s 27 percent. In other words, it wasn’t even close.
Just 14 percent of the 163,617 registered voters traveled to the polls to vote.
Wagner, 58, who owns a trash hauling company and another trucking enterprise, will reportedly refuse taxpayer-funded pension or health insurance and is vowing to limit himself to just two terms. He also campaigned on a promise to work to decrease the size of the state government in Pennsylvania.
The newest tea party lawmaker and the GOP establishment clashed during the campaign. He will now be working alongside the same Republicans who went after him.
The York Dispatch reports that the conservative businessman “made a point of bucking his own party.” Senate Republicans in the state reportedly ran a number of attack ads against Wagner, painting him as a bully and his trash hauling company as “environmental violator,” PennLive.com reports.
The fact he was still able to win easily in the face of the Republican and Democratic Parties likely has some in Washington, D.C. a little nervous about the upcoming midterm elections. Several commentators have predicted a Republican landslide similar to 2010.
Further, there are also races where establishment Republicans are fighting to keep their seats in the face of tough tea party opposition.
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