DePasquale 'strongly considering' a second challenge to Rep. Perry

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch
Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale speaks to media, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, after he appeared at a Rotary Club of York program featuring the candidates for the 10th Congressional District at the Country Club of York. Congressman Scott Perry, his opponent, appeared in the program last month. Bill Kalina photo

Former state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is ramping up fundraising efforts and rhetoric for a potential second bid to oust U.S. Rep. Scott Perry — but he still isn't making it official.

In a Monday campaign email, DePasquale requested $25 donations from supporters to "build our campaign to get Scott Perry out of our Capitol." That's a change from March, when during an interview with The York Dispatch he said he was far from making a decision to run.

"I'm strongly considering running," DePasquale said in a follow-up interview on Wednesday. "I’m not making any final decisions until the (new congressional maps) are done."

DePasquale, who is already registered as a candidate on the Federal Election Commission website, has also begun to run ads against Perry, R-Carroll Township.

On May 17, he posted an ad on his YouTube page attacking Perry, highlighting Perry's objection to Pennsylvania's election results and alleging the Republican helped instigate the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

In the 2020 election, DePasquale lost by 6.6 percentage points despite the fact the race was expected by many to be one of the most competitive in the nation.

Political newcomers in the past have had better results.

George Scott, a pastor from Dauphin County, in 2018 came within 3 percentage points of Perry. Scott decided not to run again in the last Democratic primary, paving the way for DePasquale's victory over Tom Brier.

DePasquale, though, argued there is a "huge opportunity" to beat Perry because the incumbent's reputation among Republicans and independents seems to have suffered since his vote to de-certify election results.

DePasquale is currently the only Democrat registered for the 2022 election.

Between Jan. 1 and March 31, DePasquale raised $18,406 and spent $12,380, according to FEC reports. The campaign had $13,922 cash on hand, but it also owed $148,632 in debts.

Perry raised $310,433 and spent $201,081 during the same time period. With $280,680 cash on hand, the campaign owes $22,878 in debts.

In the 2022 Republican primary election, Perry is expected to face off against Brian Allen, a Mechanicsburg native who works at Penn State Children's Hospital in Hershey.

A lifelong Republican, Allen argues the five-term incumbent and the GOP as a whole have gone too far — and that he no longer recognizes his party.

The 10th District includes northern York County, part of Cumberland County and all of Dauphin County. 

Perry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.