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Valley News Dispatch

Harrison Dems pledge support to candidates for state and federal seats

Tribune-Review
| Sunday, September 30, 2018 5:24 p.m
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U.S. Rep. Connor Lamb mixes with the crowd Sunday at a Harrison Democratic Committee picnic at the Natrona Heights VFW Post 894.
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State Rep. Frank Dermody, D-Oakmont, talks to Sydney Hayden of Harrison Sunday during a picnic hosted by the Harrison Democratic Committee.
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Jon McCabe of Lower Burrell, a candidate for the 54th State House District, talks to people attending a picnic Sunday hosted by the Harrison Democratic Committee.

U.S. Rep. Connor Lamb urged Democrat Party members Sunday to support him and other candidates running against Republicans in the mid-term elections coming up in November.

Lamb of Mt. Lebanon was joined by state Rep. Frank Dermody, D-Oakmont, the state’s Democratic minority leader; Lindsey Williams of West View, a candidate for the state’s 38th Senate District; and Jon McCabe of Lower Burrell, who’s running for a seat in the 54th State House District, for a picnic hosted by the Harrison Democratic Committee.

“You all are the heart and soul of this party,” Lamb told the crowd of about 100 people gathered under a pavilion at Natrona Heights VFW Post 894. “You go to work. You put the signs out. You knock on peoples’ doors. That’s what we need.”

Lamb, who is running against GOP Congressman Keith Rothfus of Sewickley in the 17th Congressional District, never mentioned his opponent by name, but he was critical of Republican initiatives, saying they have resulted in tax cuts for the wealthy, higher prescription drug prices and rising healthcare insurance premiums.

“What it’s about now is about your paycheck and about your pension,” Lamb said. “It’s about Social Security and it’s about Medicare, because (Republican House Speaker) Paul Ryan and those guys decided that they wanted one thing more than anything else, and that was to cut taxes for the wealthiest, for the biggest corporations. Literally, the next day he was coming out in Washington, D.C., and saying, ‘Well, it’s time to go after these entitlement programs.’”

Rothfus spokesman Mike Barley said Lamb misled the crowd.

“Keith Rothfus has has been very clear that he won’t support any cuts to Social Security and Medicare, and if Connor Lamb wants to go around the district and say how he believes people should pay higher taxes, we encourage him to do so,” Barley said.

Lamb said he and other Democratic candidates desperately need help from hard-working party members.

“We need to be out there every single day between now and (the election) getting it done,” he said.

Charlie Clark, who chairs the Harrison Democratic Committee, promised workers would be out in coming weeks canvassing neighborhoods and urging residents to support Democratic candidates. He said they would also work polls on election day.

“We’ve got a lot of energy this year,” he said. “I think there’s a renewed enthusiasm for people to take things into their own hands and vote.”

Dermody, who is seeking a 15th term and faces a challenge from GOP candidate Joshua Nulph of Harrison, said local committee campaign assistance is extremely important.

“It’s key,” he said. “Having a committee that’s unified and helps you with it is very, very important.”

People attending the picnic pledged their support.

Christa Jones, 40, of Tarentum, said McCabe, 22, seemed “very energetic.”

“He seems like he can bring something young, new and fresh,” she said. “This is my first time hearing (Lamb) speak. He had a lot of good things to say.”

Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bob at 412-765-2312, bbauder@tribweb.com or via Twitter @bobbauder.

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