It didn’t work for Donald Trump in 2020, but the former president thinks telling his preferred candidate in the ultraclose Pennsylvania GOP Senate primary race to declare victory will seal the contest for him.
Trump suggested that Dr. Mehmet Oz declare himself the victor Wednesday before anyone else can deem the contest finished.
PENNSYLVANIA GOP SENATE PRIMARY BETWEEN MCCORMICK AND OZ TOO CLOSE TO CALL
“Dr. Oz should declare victory. It makes it much harder for them to cheat with the ballots that they ‘just happened to find,’” Trump said on Truth Social.
In one of Tuesday night's highest-profile and most-watched primary contests, Oz and former hedge fund manager David McCormick remained within a few percentage points of each other, sending everyone to bed without a conclusion to the race. Trump threw his support behind Oz, a fellow television personality-cum-politician, pushing the doctor into a leading position in the race.
As of Wednesday evening, Oz held a 0.2% lead on McCormick, well within the 0.5% margin that requires an automatic recount in Pennsylvania. More than 30 precincts in Allegheny County, including Pittsburgh, haven’t reported results as of Wednesday and won’t be releasing figures until after its return board meets Friday, according to the county.
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Trump tried to use a similar tactic to claim victory in the 2020 presidential contest. When initial returns showed the former president ahead, a result of a campaign to tell Republican voters they should vote in person rather than through the mail, the exact opposite message Democratic politicians gave their voters, Trump claimed he was the winner and that vote-tallying should stop.