Pa. AG Josh Shapiro announces run for governor

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AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

Pennsylvania’s Democratic attorney general Josh Shapiro speaks to a crowd with the city behind him during his campaign launch address for Pennsylvania governor, Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, in Pittsburgh.

By Millicent Watt, Assistant News Editor

Pennsylvania Democratic attorney general Josh Shapiro announced Wednesday from the North Shore’s Riverfront Park that he is running for governor, saying that as attorney general he “got things done.”

“I have shown up, I’ve listened and I surely have learned,” Shapiro said. “As Pennsylvania’s attorney general, the powerful have been put on notice and the people have been heard, I’ve fought for those who have been wronged, citizens who’ve been left out and communities that have been forgotten. I’ve stood up for them, brought people together and I’ve got things done.”

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald and Pittsburgh’s likely next mayor Ed Gainey, both Democrats, also spoke at the rally and endorsed Shapiro.

Pennsylvania is a historical swing state and is nearly evenly divided among Democrats and Republicans. Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat elected in 2014 and reelected in 2018, is term limited and unable to run for governor again. Candidates running in the Republican primary for governor include former Rep. Lou Barletta, former U.S. attorney Bill McSwain and GOP strategist Charlie Gerow.

Shapiro launched an investigation into sexual abuse allegations against the Catholic Church, resulting in a report that accuses more than 300 Pennsylvania priests of sexual abuse. Shapiro also resolved tension between health care giants Highmark and UPMC, and challenged top Senate Republicans over subpoenaing personal voter information.

Shapiro released a video Wednesday announcing his bid, saying the Republican candidates “want to lead us down a dark path.”

“[W]e’re in a critical time in America, here in Pennsylvania, too. Already there are Republicans running for governor who want to lead us down a dark path, undermine free and fair elections, strip away voting rights and permanently divide us. That’s the kind of divisive politics that gets in the way of solving real problems.”

The video also featured support from Gainey.

“Josh will work to build a more just society, as attorney general, he stood in the way of those who wanted to upend last year’s election,” Gainey said. “And he will always fight to protect voting rights for everyone.” 

After visiting Pittsburgh, Shapiro hosted a rally in his native Montgomery County Wednesday evening.

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