PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — After a sometimes nasty Democratic primary where two congressmen — Jason Altmire and Mark Critz — went at each other, the loser, Altmire, wasted no time endorsing Critz at a rally at the Allegheny County Courthouse Park.

“As a consistuent of the 12th congressional district, I support Mark Critz,” Altmire said. “I am here to offer him my full support in this race. I am happy to do so. He is a friend, and somebody I have campaigned for before, and I’ll be happy to do so again.”

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Altmire said it was important that every democratic voter in the region unite behind Critz, or else.

“The entire western part of the state, from Harrisburg up to State College all the way west to the Ohio border, will have one Democratic member of the House of Representatives,” Altmire said. “That cannot be allowed to happen.”

At a time when Rick Santorum has still not endorsed Mitt Romney, Critz said Altmire’s quick support speaks volumes.

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“For him to turn around so fast to endorse me really is a testament to his character and his integrity,” Critz told KDKA-TV’s political editor Jon Delano.

Critz now races republican Keith Rothfus in the new 12th District from the Ohio line in Beaver and Lawrence Counties through the North Hills and northern Westmoreland County into Cambria and Somerset Counties.

“This is not going to be a cakewalk,” Critz said. “We’re going to work hard at it. It’s obviously republican leaning, although it’s a Democratic registration edge. We have some work to do. I’ve been through tough races; Jason’s been through tough races.

“Together I think this is a mountain we can climb.”

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