Casey and McCormick will run alone on Pennsylvania Senate ballots after judges bar challengers.

In Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, — A decision made by the highest court in Pennsylvania on Friday narrowed the field for the office's April primary to just two candidates: Republican David McCormick and Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey.

This verdict brings the total number of successful challenges to the paperwork of three relatively unknown candidates to three. With this ruling, Casey and McCormick are practically guaranteed to win their party primary elections on April 23 without any opposition.

In a year when Democrats face a challenging Senate map in 2024—requiring them to protect incumbents in both red and swing states—the November fight between Casey and McCormick is anticipated to be one of the most costly and keenly watched in the nation.

The incumbent, Casey, is seeking reelection against McCormick, a former chief executive officer of a hedge fund who was endorsed by the state GOP but who lost the GOP primary in 2022 by a hair to Dr. Mehmet Oz.

If Democrats want to keep the White House and the Senate in Democratic hands, they'll need to win Pennsylvania, a key presidential battleground state. If Casey loses, Republicans would almost certainly gain control of the Senate, which is currently divided along razor-thin lines.

Joe Vodvarka, a Republican candidate, had his appeal against a lower court's decision to remove his name from the primary ballots denied because he did not collect enough valid signatures.

After the Republican voters who had opposed his petitions failed to notify the state elections office of their legal challenge, Vodvarka filed an appeal claiming that he should be included on the primary ballots. The state supreme court's ruling was left unexplained in its brief two-line order.

Earlier in March, two additional contenders for the U.S. Senate race had their paperwork challenged in court. The Republican from Lancaster County, Brandi Tomasetti, and the Democrat from Allegheny County, William Parker, were both removed from the ballots.

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