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Mike Kelly Confirms Rumors, Says He'll Consider U.S. Senate Run In PA

J. Scott Applewhite
Republican members of the House of Representatives gather in the House Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017, as the 115th Congress convened. Rep. Mike Kelly, R-PA, laughs at center top.

U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly of northwestern Pennsylvania says he won't run for governor, but may still decide to seek the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey in 2018.

Kelly issued the brief statement Friday.

The 69-year-old Kelly says he'll make a final decision later this summer.

Kelly is in his fourth term in Congress. Already declaring their candidacy are a half-dozen would-be challengers to Casey, although Kelly would easily be the highest-profile among them.

U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta of northeastern Pennsylvania also says he's considering running for the GOP nomination.

Casey plans to seek a third six-year term. Democrats' 4-3 registration edge over Republicans gives Casey a built-in advantage, although that didn't stop President Donald Trump or U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey from winning Pennsylvania last November.