Early GOP governor hopeful Lou Barletta visits Butler County

Early GOP governor hopeful Lou Barletta visits Butler County


In the backroom of Domenico’s Ristorante in Cranberry Township, Mary Kay Soriani can’t shake the sense of the same feeling she had five years ago.”I feel as strongly about Lou taking the lead in Pennsylvania as I did about Donald Trump in ’16,” Soriani said.’Lou’ is Lou Barletta, the former mayor of Hazleton in Luzerne County and four-term congressman.Barletta was among the first Pennsylvania congressional leaders to endorse President Donald Trump in 2016.Soriani says she’s frustrated by the Wolf administration and believes the state is ready for a change in leadership.Wolf is term-limited and cannot run for a third term.”I feel that Lou is the person who’s going to take the lead. Reunite this state, and bring it back to the glory days that it belongs,” Soriani said.”At the end of the day there were really 14 good reasons for me to run for governor, and that’s four daughters and 10 grandchildren. I don’t like the direction that the state is going right now,” Barletta said.Barletta’s campaign has come out critically against Gov. Wolf’s handling of COVID-19 in the state; specifically the impact of shutdowns on small businesses, and the handling of nursing homes and schools.”Why could you go into a Walmart to buy a bicycle, but you couldn’t go to your local bike shop to buy a bicycle. This hurt people,” Barletta said.Barletta held a law enforcement roundtable and then spoke with voters in Cranberry on Wednesday night.A big question surrounding the Republican primary for governor will be the former President Donald Trump’s involvement.Barletta chaired Trump’s 2020 operation in Pennsylvania, which the former president lost by around 80,000 votes. But Barletta says he hasn’t communicated with Trump about the race.”I haven’t spoken with President Trump. I have no idea what he’ll do. Everyone knows my relationship there,” Barletta said.This comes as the Associated Press reports State Sen. Doug Mastriano met with Trump on Monday and later told a Chambersburg radio station that Trump is encouraging him to run.Mastriano rose to prominence for questioning the legitimacy of Pennsylvania’s election results. Election integrity is part of Barletta’s campaign.Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 asked Barletta if he believes Joe Biden was the rightful winner of the 2020 election.”Can anybody really say? We don’t know how much irregularities. I’m not saying he was or wasn’t. I’m just saying should we even have that discussion, should we even be asking, do you really think he is the president?” Barletta said.Pennsylvania’s election results were certified and no evidence of widespread, malicious, intentional fraud was found in court.Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 reporter Bob Mayo reached out to the Democratic Governor’s Association when Barletta announced his candidacy earlier this week. They call Barletta the front-runner right now.”And I think that presents huge problems for Republicans both within their primary and in the general election. He was one of the most prominent supporters of the Big Lie that led to the catastrophic events we saw at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that led to the deaths of five Americans,” DGA Communications Director David Turner told Pittsburgh’s Action News 4.No Democrat has formally announced their candidacy for the governor’s race.

In the backroom of Domenico’s Ristorante in Cranberry Township, Mary Kay Soriani can’t shake the sense of the same feeling she had five years ago.

“I feel as strongly about Lou taking the lead in Pennsylvania as I did about Donald Trump in ’16,” Soriani said.

‘Lou’ is Lou Barletta, the former mayor of Hazleton in Luzerne County and four-term congressman.

Barletta was among the first Pennsylvania congressional leaders to endorse President Donald Trump in 2016.

Soriani says she’s frustrated by the Wolf administration and believes the state is ready for a change in leadership.

Wolf is term-limited and cannot run for a third term.

“I feel that Lou is the person who’s going to take the lead. Reunite this state, and bring it back to the glory days that it belongs,” Soriani said.

“At the end of the day there were really 14 good reasons for me to run for governor, and that’s four daughters and 10 grandchildren. I don’t like the direction that the state is going right now,” Barletta said.

Barletta’s campaign has come out critically against Gov. Wolf’s handling of COVID-19 in the state; specifically the impact of shutdowns on small businesses, and the handling of nursing homes and schools.

“Why could you go into a Walmart to buy a bicycle, but you couldn’t go to your local bike shop to buy a bicycle. This hurt people,” Barletta said.

Barletta held a law enforcement roundtable and then spoke with voters in Cranberry on Wednesday night.

A big question surrounding the Republican primary for governor will be the former President Donald Trump’s involvement.

Barletta chaired Trump’s 2020 operation in Pennsylvania, which the former president lost by around 80,000 votes. But Barletta says he hasn’t communicated with Trump about the race.

“I haven’t spoken with President Trump. I have no idea what he’ll do. Everyone knows my relationship there,” Barletta said.

This comes as the Associated Press reports State Sen. Doug Mastriano met with Trump on Monday and later told a Chambersburg radio station that Trump is encouraging him to run.

Mastriano rose to prominence for questioning the legitimacy of Pennsylvania’s election results. Election integrity is part of Barletta’s campaign.

Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 asked Barletta if he believes Joe Biden was the rightful winner of the 2020 election.

“Can anybody really say? We don’t know how much irregularities. I’m not saying he was or wasn’t. I’m just saying should we even have that discussion, should we even be asking, do you really think he is the president?” Barletta said.

Pennsylvania’s election results were certified and no evidence of widespread, malicious, intentional fraud was found in court.

Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 reporter Bob Mayo reached out to the Democratic Governor’s Association when Barletta announced his candidacy earlier this week. They call Barletta the front-runner right now.

“And I think that presents huge problems for Republicans both within their primary and in the general election. He was one of the most prominent supporters of the Big Lie that led to the catastrophic events we saw at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that led to the deaths of five Americans,” DGA Communications Director David Turner told Pittsburgh’s Action News 4.

No Democrat has formally announced their candidacy for the governor’s race.



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