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Shaffer gets stamp of approval from top House Republican, House GOP committee

jeremy shaffer.png
Rebecca Droke
FR171725 AP
Jeremy Shaffer, Republican candidate for Pennsylvania's 17th Congressional District, talks with supporters at a campaign event, Sunday, May 15, 2022, in McCandless Twp., Pa. Pennsylvania's primary election is Tuesday, May 17, 2022.

In yet another sign that western Pennsylvania will emerge as a key Congressional battleground this November, House minority leader Kevin McCarthy and a key national GOP committee, are staking out a claim in the 17th Congressional District.

The Republican in that race, Jeremy Shaffer, recently garnered the backing of McCarthy and the National Republican Congressional Committee, which seeks to elect and protect Republicans in the US House.

The NRCC has added Shaffer to its list of "Young Guns," a roster of candidates slated to receive campaign support. Among other things, that means more ads coming to a TV screen near you: By one metric, the NRCC has reserved nearly $3 million in ad time for Shaffer this fall.

Shaffer's Democratic rival, Chris Deluzio, has similarly been marked as a top-tier candidate by the NRCC's rival organization, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. The DCCC has so far pledged to spend $1.4 million on advertising this fall, and other committees tied to both parties also have signaled their intention to spend millions on the race.

The sums reflect the fact that the 17th — a district that includes Beaver County as well as a broad swath of Allegheny County's suburbs — is shaping up as a key battleground. The seat is currently held by Democrat Conor Lamb, but he ran for Senate rather than for reelection.

In a statement, McCarthy said Shaffer "will be a leader and problem-solver for Western Pennsylvanians as a member of Congress. ...I look forward to supporting Jeremy and working with him as we fire [House speaker Nancy] Pelosi and Take Back the House in November."

Shaffer, who runs a firm that provides software used to inspect bridge and other infrastructure, handily won a three-way primary race last month. And he's had the support of top Republicans since the outset of his campaign. And and Deluzio will square off on November 8.

Nearly three decades after leaving home for college, Chris Potter now lives four miles from the house he grew up in -- a testament either to the charm of the South Hills or to a simple lack of ambition. In the intervening years, Potter held a variety of jobs, including asbestos abatement engineer and ice-cream truck driver. He has also worked for a number of local media outlets, only some of which then went out of business. After serving as the editor of Pittsburgh City Paper for a decade, he covered politics and government at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He has won some awards during the course of his quarter-century journalistic career, but then even a blind squirrel sometimes digs up an acorn.