Fetterman restates campaign platform before polls open on Tuesday


Patrick Cavanagh | Senior Staff Photographer

Democratic senate candidate John Fetterman waves to supporters at a rally at Carpenters Union Hall Monday night.

By James Paul, Staff Writer

On the eve of the Pennsylvania midterm election, John Fetterman rallied at the Carpenters Union Hall in front of a crowd of 150 people. In the final push to secure a Senate seat against Republican candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz, Fetterman said “there’s one thing to do — just vote.” 

In the last event on his nearly two-year campaign trail, Fetterman used Monday night’s rally, hosted by the Pennsylvania Democrats’ All In PA group, to highlight the tenets of his campaign and final attacks on Oz. The race ends Tuesday, and according to FiveThirtyEight, Oz has a projected lead of 0.5% 

Fetterman said his campaign was all about trying “to serve Pennsylvania,” and related his experience as an educator to his mayoral term in Braddock, PA. 

“I started up in Braddock 21 years ago, just to teach GEDs and help young people get their lives together,” Fetterman said. “It was just what really is important and what matters and that’s what I expected to spend my career in — a career in serving.” 

Fetterman touted his plans to cut inflation by making efforts to dismantle the filibuster. Transitioning to an offensive against Oz, Fetterman said it’s “critical that our next senator really understands inflation.” 

“Somebody that has 10 gigantic mansions doesn’t have any other idea what any of these things really cost or what that can really do to your life, so it’s critical that we push back against corporate greed,” Fetterman said.  

Democratic senate candidate John Fetterman speaks at a rally at Carpenters Union Hall Monday night. (Patrick Cavanagh | Senior Staff Photographer)

Fetterman also reaffirmed his stance on the universal right to abortion access and gay marriage equality. Additionally, Fetterman promised to leverage a Senate seat for a higher federal minimum wage and expanded healthcare.

“I stand to protect Medicare and Social Security,” Fetterman said. “To me, those are pillars of American society and I will be there to stand and support it and strengthen it at every juncture.”

U.S. House 17th district Democratic candidate Chris Deluzio, who is running against Republican Jeremey Shaffer, was also in attendance at Monday night’s rally. Both Deluzio and Fetterman’s wife, Giselle Fetterman, spoke before the Senate candidate.  

Deluzio, who was endorsed by Fetterman, echoed his support for unions, which Fetterman boasts as a “sacred” part of his campaign.  

“Let’s bring back our manufacturing, let’s stand up to the corporations that are ripping us off,” Deluzio said. “I am proud in this union hall like John standing with and backed by unions fighting for working families, not these huge corporations that are gouging all of us.” 

Mark Craven, an attendee and 2001 Pitt alum, said as a “family friend” to Fetterman, he’s been following the campaign since the beginning. According to Craven, Fetterman is the “same person” on and off the campaign trail. 

“I know him personally,” Craven said. “He is who he says he is and I’m not just saying that, you know, because he’s running for office. That’s a true statement. Sincerely, he’s just a genuine person.” 

Craven pointed to the final push of Fetterman’s campaign, and his “strong,” performance at the last rally as a defense of the candidate’s health. Following a stroke earlier this year, Oz and political pundits have scrutinized Fetterman’s ability to hold a seat in the Senate.  

“I think it’s so important to realize John’s five months out of stroke,” Craven said. “And I mean, look at just this weekend that he had, just back-to-back events, even today, all day long, and now tonight, I mean, he’s standing strong.”

Deluzio encouraged the crowd to get “John and all of us over that finish line.”  

“Whether it’s knocking on a few more doors, calling a few more voters, tax banking, checking in with your neighbors, you can talk to that Uncle you lost touch with,” Deluzio said. “Let’s finish this strong.”

Voters will take to the polls for the midterm election on Tuesday. Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. 

James Paul is a staff writer at The Pitt News. You can follow his work on Twitter @jamesdpaul.