Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano recently announced that he has hired Jenna Ellis, a lawyer for former President Donald Trump who helped investigate the 2020 election results. Mastriano stated, “Jenna Ellis was the first to endorse us and was a champion for our campaign during the Primary Election. The talent, experience, and legal expertise Jenna brings will be an important factor in helping us defeat Josh Shapiro and the extreme Democrat agenda in November.” Mastriano, like Ellis, tried to overturn Pennsylvania’s election results.
Ellis said that Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial race is “the most important in the country,” adding that Mastriano would “reinstate personal and economic freedom” in Pennsylvania and “restore integrity to our elections.” Ellis was one of Trump’s public faces in his attempt to overturn the election based on claims of election fraud. However, last year, she announced her intention to leave the Republican Party, claiming that it was not conservative enough.
Despite a last-ditch effort by some state Republicans to coalesce the field around a different candidate they believed would fare better against Shapiro, Pennsylvania’s attorney general, in November’s general election in the swing state, Mastriano, a state senator, won Pennsylvania’s Republican gubernatorial nomination last month. After it became evident in surveys that Mastriano would win the election, Trump endorsed him at the last minute.
The race is considered “Lean Democratic” by nonpartisan election observers, and Republicans have lost four of the previous five governor elections in Pennsylvania. Outgoing Governor Tom Wolf, who is reaching his term limit, is a Democrat. Some Republicans are skeptical of Mastriano’s general election potential. The Republican Governors Association issued an indifferent statement after Mastriano was declared the winner of the primary in May, saying that it “remains committed to engaging in competitive gubernatorial contests where our support can have an impact in defending our incumbents and expanding our majority this year,” without explicitly stating if Mastriano was one of those candidates.