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Pa. Senate primary: Tensions build in high-profile race to fill Sen. Toomey’s seat

Kathy Barnette (R), John Fetterman (D), and Dr. Mehmet Oz (R) are vying to fill a U.S. Senate seat that will soon be vacated by GOP Sen.

Pat Toomey, (Photos by Michael M. Santiago, Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images) HARRISBURG, Pa. - The race for retiring Republican U.S. Sen.

Pat Toomey's seat has been dominated by a huge primary field that has been particularly contested on the GOP side.The crowded GOP race includes candidates Dr. Mehmet Oz, Kathy Barnette, Dave McCormick, Jeff Bartos, Carla Sands, Sean Gale and George Bochetto. For Republicans, the race looked for much of the campaign like a two-man contest between the Trump-endorsed Oz, best known as the host of daytime TV's "The Dr. Oz Show, and former hedge fund CEO David McCormick.But several prominent conservative groups have gotten involved in the race’s final days, backing lesser-known conservative activist Kathy Barnette as an alternative.

A recent Fox News poll shows she is surging, just trailing Oz and McCormick.Oz faced criticisms for his dual citizenship in Turkey. If elected, Oz would be the nation’s first Muslim senator and he vowed to forgo his citizenship with the nation. Although supported by Trump, some conservative groups worry that Oz does not reflect their views on key issues such as guns and abortion, which became a key issue in the gubernatorial debate. All candidates said they would support measures to restrict access to abortion, but McCormick and Barnette brought up comments Oz made three years ago on a radio show where he expressed concern over Alabama’s measure that nearly led to a state abortion ban. Barnette, a conservative speaker and veteran who revealed she was conceived in rape when her mother was 11, challenged Oz on his

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Mehmet Oz Pat Toomey

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