Trump fumes as mail-in ballots favor Oz rival McCormick in tight primary

Donald Trump continues to criticize the Republican primary for the Senate in Pennsylvania, as mail-in ballots favor David McCormick, who is the rival of the candidate endorsed by the former president, Dr. Mehmet Oz.

The high-profile primary has tested Trump’s influence within the GOP, with his endorsement of Oz, known for his eponymous television show, drawing the ire of many conservatives. The results remain close and the race is likely heading to a recount.

Oz still appeared to have a narrow lead, beating former hedge fund manager McCormick by just over 1,000 votes on Sunday morning. However, McCormick won more mail-in ballots, leaving the swing state’s primary results unknown nearly a week after counting began.

In all, McCormick won 45,388 mail-in ballots, compared to Oz’s 32,680, according to the latest data released by the Pennsylvania Department of State. The state does not count these ballots until Election Day, so a delay in reporting final results is expected.

Dr. Mehmet Oz appears to have a narrow lead in the Pennsylvania Republican Senate primary, but his opponent David McCormick leads on mail-in ballots. Meanwhile, former President Donald Trump has lashed out at the vote-counting process. Above, Oz speaks to his fans Tuesday night in Newtown, Pennsylvania.
Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

Oz has built an advantage with those voters, who cast their ballots on Election Day, winning 418,508 total votes, while McCormick won 417,430.

A federal appeals court on Friday added more complexity to the ballot-counting process, however, ruling that hundreds of ballots from last November’s election that were returned undated in their envelopes must be counted.

The decision prompted the McCormick campaign to ask state attorneys to also count undated ballots that were “received in time” for Tuesday’s election, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. If those votes are counted, they could potentially benefit McCormick, since he has won the most mail-in ballots so far.

Trump, meanwhile, bristled at the vote-counting process and questioned why it was taking so long as he compared it to a “third world nation” in a post on his social media platform Truth Social on Saturday night.

“So what’s going on with Pennsylvania?” he wrote. “Five days now, and watched by the incompetent Democratic gubernatorial candidate Josh Shapiro. The entire nation of France ended during ONE DAY presidential election night. PAPER BALLOT USED, no discrepancies. ARE WE A THIRD WORLD NATION? we became Venezuela (YES!)”.

On Sunday he attacked The Wall Street JournalThe editorial board of , which criticized him for encouraging Oz to declare victory earlier in the week. The former president accused the newspaper of believing that “what is happening in Pennsylvania with the vote is a wonderful and transparent event.”

“We are laughed at and taken advantage of all over the world, and now, especially after 2020, that includes our elections! Still waiting for Pennsylvania? Keep protecting China WSJ!” Trump wrote.

Some local Republican officials have expressed frustration with his comments.

“I’m dumbfounded. When someone who argues that everyone needs to get their votes and that their opponents are cheating, and now he’s talking about his own party?” Dave Ball, chairman of the Washington County Republicans, said washington post earlier this week. “When the president says let’s cut it here because I like the number here, then let’s stop, I don’t understand the point of making statements like that.”

Whoever emerges victorious will face Democratic Lt. Gov. John Fetterman in what will likely be one of the most closely watched races of the midterms.

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