PA-10: On Tuesday, the deadline for Pennsylvania House candidates to challenge their opponents’ signatures, nonprofit consultant Christina Hartman announced she was dropping her bid against GOP Rep. Scott Perry in the state’s redrawn 10th District. In a statement, Hartman would only say that “this is not the right time for me,” but the day before, fellow Democrat George Scott had objected to Hartman’s petitions, claiming that most of her signatures were invalid.
It’s not clear what happened, but Hartman only joined the race for the 10th District a few weeks before petitions were due, after court-ordered redistricting made the 11th (the successor of the old 16th, where she had been running a second time) considerably redder. The compressed timeframe plus Hartman’s lack of ties to the 10th may have made the job of getting on the ballot harder, but Hartman had enough money in the bank to ensure this most critical task was handled correctly, so it’s hard to explain this one.
Fortunately, epidemiologist Eric Ding entered the race last month and says he raised $50,000 in his first week, so Democrats might yet have a credible contender. Scott, for all his bragging about knocking Hartman off the ballot, raised less than that all of last year, despite kicking off his campaign in May. Air Force veteran Alan Howe, who also launched last May, has likewise raised very little, while former Obama administration staffer Shavonnia Corbin-Johnson has yet to file any reports with the FEC.
But while the 10th, when went for Donald Trump by a 52-43 margin, is much bluer than Perry’s old 4th District (which supported Trump 59-37), this is still very much a reach for Democrats. However, if Ding can prove himself, this district could flip in a strong wave.