LNP Media Group and the York Daily Record are holding a forum for candidates in the 11th Congressional District tonight.
The event will be livestreamed on LancasterOnline and ydr.com beginning at 6:30 p.m. and recorded for viewing anytime afterward.
Republican U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker is seeking a third two-year term in the House of Representatives and faces Democratic nominee Sarah Hammond in the heavily Republican district.
The election is Tuesday, Nov. 3.
Smucker has declined to participate in the forum.
Hammond, 27, of East Lampeter Township, easily defeated Democrat Paul Daigle in the party primary in June. She is a field hockey coach at Hanover Senior High School in York County.
Hammond has campaigned on uncoupling health insurance from employment and creating a single-payer, Medicare for all health care system; implementing policies from the Green New Deal climate plan; and allowing Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to operate independent of politics so it can prepare the nation’s pandemic response teams.
Smucker, 56, of West Lampeter Township, is a former businessman – he owned and operated a local construction company – who served two terms in the state Senate before being elected to succeed Republican U.S. Rep. Joe Pitts in 2016. He is a close ally of President Donald Trump and supporter of many of the president’s policies.
He has campaigned in previous years on tax cuts and regulatory relief, unwinding the Affordable Care Act and legislation to bolster the district through workforce development and national recognition.
At the forum, Hammond will answer questions from a panel of three journalists. The journalists are Sam Janesch, an investigative reporter for The Caucus, a publication of LNP Media Group; Gillian McGoldrick, a reporter who covers state and federal government for LNP|LancasterOnline; and Sam Ruland, a reporter who covers Pennsylvania issues for the York Daily Record and USA Today network.
The congressional district, which was redrawn in 2018, includes all of Lancaster County and southern York County. Smucker won re-election that year with 59% of the vote.
He first won election in 2016 in what had been the 16th Congressional District, which covered most of Lancaster County and parts of Chester and Berks counties. He won a three-way race that year with 54% of the vote.
Nearly half a million voters live in the 11th Congressional District. Of them, 248,490 or nearly 53% of them are Republicans, 147,699 or about 31% are Democrats, and 75,078 or 16% are not affiliated with either major political party.
In the 2016 presidential election, voters in the precincts that now make up the 11th Congressional District gave Trump a 26-percentage-point margin over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, helping the Republican carry Pennsylvania.
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