Conor Lamb is the Democratic candidate for Congress in Pennsylvania's 18th District. The 33 year old is making news for running an unusually tight race in a traditional Republican district, significantly outraising his GOP opponent in a special election that will be decided on March 13.
Who is Conor Lamb?
Lamb is an attorney, former Marine and former federal prosecutor who lives in Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Pittsburgh where he grew up. His grandfather and father were active in Pittsburgh politics. Lamb got a political-science degree and a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania and went to Officers Training School after joining the Marine Corps.
What does Conor Lamb stand for?
Lamb, who identifies as Catholic, has expressed moderate views. On the hot topic of gun control, he says he favors enhanced background checks but doesn't want to move hastily on gun legislation. He does not support Medicare for All or a $15 minimum wage.
To defuse GOP attempts to align him with Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, he has said he would not support Pelosi for Speaker if the Democrats retake the House. He has spotlighted the heroin crisis, job creation and modern energy development as priorities. He said he would not vote for a bill that prohibited abortion after 20 weeks.
Could Conor Lamb win?
If this were a typical election cycle, it would be a long shot for a Democrat. The district is reliably Republican, and President Trump won Lamb's district by 20 points in 2016. But polling by Monmouth University in mid-February showed that Lamb's Trump-supporting opponent, Rick Saccone, was up by only three points. "To put it mildly, a 3-percentage-point lead isn't anything close to a sure thing in a House special election," says Harry Enten of CNN. In the district, Trump's approval rating has dropped 16 points in a year. And overall, the wind is at Democrats' back — they've flipped 39 state legislature seats from red to blue since Trump took office. The GOP has only won a few of those races. And Lamb has significantly outraised Sassone: According to SEC filings, in the period between Jan. 1 and Feb. 21, the Lamb campaign has raised $3.3 million to Sassone's $700,000.