GREENSBURG (KDKA) — Republican Congressman Tim Murphy and his Democratic opponent, Washington County commissioner Larry Maggi, traded barbs, as the race in the 18th Congressional District heats up.
“Murphy wants to cut Medicare,” Maggi told KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano. “I think they want to make that kind of voucher system. He voted twice for the Paul Ryan budget which makes it a voucher system and that’s just not acceptable.”
While Maggi attacks Murphy for hurting seniors, Murphy says Maggi lacks experience, especially on health care.
“There’s a massive difference in experience and expertise,” Murphy said. “Health care is one of the big concerns for families as it remains. That’s what my background — worked in it for 35 years. He has none.”
The two are running to represent the new 18th District that stretches from Greene and Washington counties through southern Allegheny and Westmoreland counties.
Both Maggi and Murphy appeared at a candidates forum in Greensburg, hosted by the Westmoreland Chamber of Commerce.
Maggi criticizes a do-nothing Republican Congress and says Washington, DC, needs what he has done in Washington County.
“We were third in the nation for job growth. We also had wages increase by nine percent in average wages for the worker. And we also have the second lowest taxes for southwestern Pennsylvania.”
Murphy says he will continue to stand up to a Democratic president when he engages in “a war on coal, on nuclear — 10 federal agencies tasked to stop natural gas development, a threat of a looming war overseas and an administration who still refuses to call it terrorism.”
Democrats think they have a shot at defeating Murphy, as the new district is majority Democrat.
But Murphy has won reelection by big margins in the past — with cross-over votes from Democrats.
Whether that happens again this year with Larry Maggi in the race is what will make this 18th Congressional district battle a good one to watch.