Democrats have landed a recruit to take on Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.): Washington County Commissioner Larry Maggi (D).
Murphy's district remains Republican-leaning after redistricting, and he has won every election by a comfortable margin. But he faces a potentially tough primary against Evan Feinberg, a young former staffer for Sens. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.).
If the very conservative Feinberg wins the primary, Democrats feel they could have a good shot at winning the seat. They argue that Murphy will be forced right in the primary, which could hurt him in the general election.
"I'm running for Congress because southwestern Pennsylvanians deserve a representative who will put the people of the 18th District ahead of partisan politics," said Maggi in a release. "For too long, too many politicians have put their political careers ahead of the interests of their constituents. As a father and a veteran I have spent my career finding practical solutions to real world problems, and I intend on bringing that approach with me to Washington."
This is Maggi's second run for Congress. He first ran in 2002, losing in a Democratic primary to the man who Murphy beat to win the seat. A former sheriff and Marine, he has an appealing profile for the blue-collar district that takes in suburban and exurban Pittsburgh.