Lou Barletta to enter Pennsylvania’s GOP stakes for governor

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Republican Lou Barletta tells The Associated Press that he will run for governor of Pennsylvania.

The 65-year-old Barletta becomes the first prominent figure to enter the 2022 governor’s race.

Barletta is a former Hazleton mayor and four-term member of Congress, and ran statewide in a 2018 loss to Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey.

Barletta said he would focus on boosting the state’s economy, but also aiming to overhaul Pennsylvania’s election law and fight illegal immigration.

Barletta has another strength in a Republican primary: a relationship with former President Donald Trump. Barletta served as Trump’s campaign co-chairman in Pennsylvania in 2016 before becoming one of Trump’s biggest allies on Capitol Hill.