Third-party candidates file to run for Pa. governor, Senate

Third-party candidates
AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File

By MARC LEVY Associated Press

Pennsylvania third-party candidates for governor and U.S. Senate have filed paperwork ahead of a Monday deadline to get on the Nov. 8 general election ballot, potentially making a crucial difference in the high-stakes races.

Keystone Party candidates for governor and U.S. Senate have filed voter signatures, while a Libertarian Party candidate has filed for U.S. Senate.

A spokesperson for the Green Party said the organization is working to accumulate enough signatures for its candidates to submit the paperwork by the deadline.

Pennsylvania’s threshold for third-party candidates to qualify for the ballot is 5,000 signatures of registered voters.

A Fox News poll conducted in late July showed Democrats polling higher than Republicans in the two races.

For governor, Democrat Josh Shapiro was outpolling Republican Doug Mastriano, 50% to 40%. For U.S. Senate, Democrat John Fetterman was outpolling the Republican nominee, Dr. Mehmet Oz, 47% to 36%.

A third-party candidate’s draw in a general election, while usually very small, could help tilt a close race between the major party candidates.

As a result, Democrats in Pennsylvania have a history of going to court to challenge the paperwork of Green Party candidates to get them off the ballot.

Meanwhile, Republicans in Pennsylvania have a history of going to court to challenge the paperwork of Libertarian Party candidates for the same reason.

A spokesperson for the newly formed Keystone Party said the organization was formed out of members of the Libertarian Party who felt that party was veering too hard to the right.

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