Pennsylvania: Top Republicans in 10th Near $400K in Treasury

Posted January 15, 2008 at 5:01pm

Businessman Dan Meuser, one of the two leading Republicans seeking to unseat Rep. Christopher Carney (D), announced late last week that he raised more than $400,000 in individual donations in the final three months of 2007. In a memo to his supporters, Meuser also announced that he loaned his campaign an additional $250,000 and finished the year with $400,000 in cash on hand.

Businessman Chris Hackett (R) ended December with about $386,800 in cash on hand, according to his spokesman Mark Harris, who declined to give any more figures.

Both Republicans are wealthy and willing to fund their bids. Meuser owns and operates Pride Mobility Products, a motorized wheelchair company, while Hackett owns a staffing solutions company — and had already tossed $100,000 of his own funds into his campaign as of the end of September.

The Republican race this week lost one candidate, teacher Don Ely, who dropped out and endorsed Meuser. Ely said he didn’t think he could raise the funds necessary to compete.

Whoever wins the Republican primary will face off against Carney, who won his first term in Congress in 2006 by defeating disgraced Rep. Don Sherwood (R). A married Sherwood was accused of strangling his girlfriend in the previous election cycle, and he subsequently lost the district that had been under Republican control for more than 35 years.

A poll sponsored last month by the American Hospital Association Political Action Committee showed Carney defeating Meuser in a head-to-head matchup, 52 percent to 23 percent, and also defeating Hackett 55 percent to 21 percent. The Momentum Analysis poll, which was just obtained by Roll Call, surveyed 400 likely voters in the district over three days in early December and had a margin of error of 4.9 points.

In related news, Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta (R) recently endorsed Meuser’s bid for the GOP nod.

“As a Congressman, Dan Meuser will fight to secure our borders, and will oppose any and all attempts at amnesty,” Barletta said. “It is time we send patriots to Washington to defend the rule of law and protect our citizens, and I know Dan Meuser will be that type of Congressman.”

Barletta himself is considering running for Congress in the district just south of the 10th, but he made his mark in national news for implementing tough anti-immigration policies in his Eastern Pennsylvania town.
— Shira Toeplitz