Republican Marci Mustello wins Butler County state House special election

Special election candidates Sam Doctor and Marci Mustello. (Courtesy campaign Facebook pages)
Special election candidates Sam Doctor and Marci Mustello. (Courtesy campaign Facebook pages)

The GOP maintained control of a Butler County state House seat Tuesday, as Republican Marci Mustello secured victory in a special election. 

The Associated Press called the race shortly after 10 p.m. 

Mustello, a local party official and staffer for U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly, beat Democratic candidate Sam Doctor 57-43 percent, according to unofficial results.

The 11th House District seat was vacated in March when GOP Rep. Brian Ellis resigned over sexual assault allegations. Ellis beat Doctor, who ran as an independent, last November with more than 76 percent of the vote.

Mustello campaigned as a social and fiscal conservative who opposes abortion rights and wants to cut back on spending in Harrisburg. Doctor, meanwhile, tied himself to union labor and promised to support anti-corruption measures.

Both candidates are pro-Second Amendment.

Mustello’s victory fills the House’s one current vacancy. But with the congressional special election victory of state Rep. Fred Keller, the House will once again be down to 202 out of 203 lawmakers.

Two other Republicans won seats in the state Senate on Tuesday: Doug Mastriano in the 33rd District and Joe Pittman in the 41st.

“I want to congratulate the three new Republican members of the General Assembly on their election victories,” Republican Party of Pennsylvania Chairman Val DiGiorgio said in a statement.

“By adding to Republican majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly, our lawmakers will be further empowered to stand up to Tom Wolf’s policies that would hinder Pennsylvania’s job creators and growth industries while also remaining steadfast on the front lines in the fight against the encroachment of socialism.”

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