Businessman Dave McCormick officially licensed to Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania’s Republican primary, making Oz the official GOP nominee to run for the state’s open US Senate seat.
Driving the news: The extremely tight race between McCormick and Oz had gone into a recount but McCormick was still falling short. The Trump-backed Oz will face Pennsylvania’s Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, who is recovering from a stroke, in November.
The big picture: A recount of the results in the Senate Republican primary were underway as McCormick conceded.
- The race was largely seen as a test for Trump’s grasp on the Republican party. Trump endorsed Oz, a celebrity TV doctor, early in the primary and Oz had declared himself the presumptive nominee as the recount went on.
- Trump supporters in Pennsylvania booed the mention of Oz’s name days before the primary.
- It was also one of the most expensive US Senate races in the country with millions of dollars contributed from across the nation, Axios’ Mike D’Onofrio Taylor Allen report.
- Oz put at least $12 million of his own money into the race. McCormick spent at least $11 million.
The GOP primary battle became a fight over mail-in voting, too. McCormick filed a lawsuit in a Pennsylvania court at the end of May to make sure all Republican mail-in ballots submitted without a handwritten signature could be counted.
Recently, Democrats haven’t been waiting around for a recount vote having already organized a campaign blitz against both candidates, Axios’ Alayna Treene reports.
- The race to replace retiring US Senator Pat Toomey (R), will be nationally watched and the outcome could determine control of the upper chamber.