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Kathy Barnette

HARRISBURG — Former Republican congressional candidate Kathy Barnette is now eyeing a spot in the U.S. Senate.

“I’ll be the voice we need to defend our rights,” Barnette said in an April 6 tweet.

Barnette announced her candidacy in a video tweeted earlier this week. She’s vying for a soon-to-be-vacant seat in the U.S. Senate occupied by U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, who announced last fall that he would not seek reelection when his term ends in 2022.

Barnette is a published author and makes appearances as a political commentator, according to a biography on her campaign website. Barnette served for 10 years in the U.S. Army Reserves and worked in corporate finance. She also homeschools her two children.

This isn’t her first time campaigning for higher office. She ran against incumbent U.S. Rep. Madeleine Dean, D-4th Dist., in the 2020 general election and lost. The 4th Congressional District includes parts of Montgomery and Berks counties.

While Barnette spoke of no specific policy or platform initiatives at this time, she’s historically supported former President Donald Trump.

She spent her prior campaign speaking to voters about financial and educational issues surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and a “response to China,” she said in an October 2020 interview.

“People who think like me are being canceled, bullied, fired, threatened and de-platformed,” Barnette said in her campaign video. “We’re told Black lives matter, except of course my Black life, because I’m a Black conservative. Radicals want to control, and strip not just Black conservatives, but all conservatives of our identity because we dare to think for ourselves.”

Barnette also took shots at President Joe Biden during her roughly three-minute video.

“Joe Biden might not think I'm Black enough because I won’t just shut up and do as I'm told, and D.C. might not be ready for me, but I've never been more ready for this fight,” she said. “I hope you’ll join me on this journey. I can’t do it alone.”

“Together we will keep on, and send a message to Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. that his words will not define us, that he can not belittle us, and he can not stop us from electing the first Black Republican woman to the United States Senate,” she continued.

More than a dozen others have announced their candidacy for the U.S. Senate seat representing Pennsylvania so far, according to Ballotpedia, including Montgomery County Commissioners Chairwoman Val Arkoosh, a Democrat, and Sean Gale, a Republican and the brother of county Commissioner Joe Gale.

@rachelravina on Twitter

Rachel Ravina is a journalist covering news and lifestyle features in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. She grew up in Blue Bell and graduated from Penn State. She's also a news enthusiast who is passionate about covering topics people want to read.

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