Trump-Backed Candidate Prevails in Critical Primary

Rep. Lou Barletta won the Republican Senate primary in Pennsylvania on Tuesday, advancing to a November matchup against Democratic incumbent Bob Casey.

With 65 percent of precincts reporting, Barletta had 61 percent of the vote to 39 percent for state Rep. Jim Christiana, according to The Associated Press.

Casey is one of 10 Democrats up for re-election in a state that President Donald Trump carried in 2016. But Trump won the Keystone State by less than 1 point, making Casey among the least vulnerable of those Democrats. Barletta’s win, which was expected, sets up a general election clash between a Trump ally against an increasingly vocal Trump critic.

Barletta was an early Trump supporter, and the president encouraged him to run for Senate. Some of Barletta’s House GOP colleagues, including Rep. Mike Kelly, decided not to challenge Casey.

Read more at Roll Call.