Pa. Republican nominee for gov. Mastriano doubles down on election lies

Doug Mastriano, the Pennsylvania Republican nominee for governor, is doubling down on his extremist political views, including promoting former President Donald Trump’s lies about nonexistent, widespread voter fraud costing him the 2020 election.

Mastriano announced last week that he has appointed Trump’s former campaign lawyer as a senior legal adviser to his campaign.

Mastriano said that lawyer Jenna Ellis brings the “talent, experience and legal expertise” to help defeat Democrat Josh Shapiro in the November election.

The decision to bring on Ellis indicates Mastriano, who was endorsed by Trump, has little interest in moderating his gubernatorial campaign ahead of the general election in November.

Ellis has also promoted Trump’s election lies.

Speaking on her podcast last month, she said: “I like to say that Doug Mastriano is the Donald Trump of Pennsylvania.”

Besides promoting Trump’s lies about widespread voter fraud costing him the 2020 election, Mastriano was outside the U.S. Capitol when a mob of Trump supporters overran it during the deadly 2021 insurrection.

He later tried to bring an Arizona-style partisan election audit to Pennsylvania before he was stripped of his committee chairmanship over it in a dispute with Senate GOP leaders.

Federal and state election officials and Trump’s own attorney general have said there is no credible evidence the election was tainted. The former president’s allegations of fraud were also roundly rejected by courts, including by judges he appointed.

Mastriano was subpoenaed in February by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol for his efforts to overturn Biden’s victory in Pennsylvania by allowing lawmakers — instead of voters — to award Pennsylvania’s presidential electors in Trump’s favor.

If Mastriano were to win in the fall, he’d shape how elections are conducted in Pennsylvania — where the governor appoints the secretary of state, who oversees elections.

Reprinted from the Philadelphia Tribune

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