President Trump knows precisely why Democratic congressional candidate Conor Lamb won the upset victory in the deep-red Pennsylvania district. On Wednesday, the president explained it was because he was “like Trump.”
Trump told GOP donors at a private fundraiser that Lamb ran “a pretty smart race, actually” against his Republican opponent Rick Saccone.
“The young man last night that ran, he said, ‘Oh, I’m like Trump. Second Amendment, everything. I love the tax cuts, everything.’ He ran on that basis,” the president said. “He ran on a campaign that said very nice things about me. I said, ‘Is he a Republican? He sounds like a Republican to me.’”
Lamb is a moderate Democrat and distanced himself from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) during his campaign. He spoke in support of expanded background checks instead of new restrictions on guns. He also said that he personally opposed abortion, but supports its legality.
Lamb campaigned against GOP tax cuts, he called them a “giveaway” to the wealthy.
“We didn’t need to add a penny to our debt to have the tax cut for our working and middle-class people,” he said during a debate.
And during the same debate, Lamb expressed some support for Trump’s Steele and aluminum tariffs. He said “we have to take some action to level the playing field,” though he also commented that he would support more targeted tariffs on countries like China.
Lamb declared a victory Tuesday night in PA’s 18th district, a GOP stronghold that Trump won by 20 points in 2016. The New York Times called the race for Lamb on Wednesday, saying that the slight lead of fewer than 700 votes over Saccone “appears insurmountable.”
Republicans poured millions into a race that should have been an easy win. The only upside for the GOP is that the district will disappear when the state’s new congressional map takes effect this Fall.
Trump not only claimed that Lamb was “like Trump, but” he also claimed that his rally for Saccone lifted the candidate’s polling numbers “seven points up.”
“That’s a lot,” Trump reportedly said. “And I was up 22 points, and we lifted seven, and seven normally would be enough, but we’ll see how it all comes out. It’s, like, virtually a tie.”
Credit: The Hill