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Politics & Government

Pennsylvania's 2018 U.S. Senate Race Gets Going With GOP Entry

Marc Levy
Republican state Rep. Rick Saccone formally declares his candidacy for the 2018 U.S. Senate race at a campaign event in the Pennsylvania Capitol in Harrisburg on Monday, Feb. 27, 2017. Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey said he'll seek a third six-year term.

Pennsylvania's 2018 race for U.S. Senate is getting underway.

Rick Saccone, a fiery Republican state lawmaker from suburban Pittsburgh, formally declared his candidacy Monday to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey. Saccone held the event in the Pennsylvania Capitol, where he was joined by conservative supporters.

The 59-year-old Saccone is one of the state Legislature's staunchest conservatives and is a strong backer of President Donald Trump.

Casey is seeking a third six-year term. The 56-year-old son of Pennsylvania's former governor, Casey is one of the state's best-known politicians and has been a fierce critic of Trump's.

A retired Air Force captain, Saccone is a frequent critic of the government and has pressed to expand the role of religion in public life.

Pennsylvania's field for U.S. Senate is otherwise vacant so far.