Weekender

It took 10 years, but Meuser finally gets another chance at Congress

WILKES-BARRE — After finishing a disappointing second in his first run for Congress in 2008, Dan Meuser is now ready to jump on the Trump Train.

Meuser, 54, of Wyoming, won the Republican nomination in the 9th Congressional District on Tuesday and will head to November hoping to keep the seat in the GOP camp. Much of the 9th District was once part of the 11th Congressional District that is currently represented by Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton, who won the GOP nod for U.S. Senate.

Meuser, a former state revenue secretary in the Corbett Administration, will face Democrat Denny Wolff, a former state agriculture secretary.

In 2008, Meuser failed in his quest for the Republican nomination in what was then the 10th Congressional District when he was defeated by businessman Chris Hackett. Hackett went on to lose the general election to Chris Carney.

On Wednesday, Meuser reflected on his primary victory, saying, “experience and involvement” were the keys to success this time around.

”You can argue that 10 years ago, I was not ready to run because I hadn’t built the relationships,” Meuser said. “As Pennsylvania secretary of revenue and being an active participant in the political process over 10 years, I built the experiences and relationships that helped propel our campaign to victory Tuesday.”

Meuser said a successful campaign is a “we” effort.

“And we built an incredible team of volunteers and supporters in every county in the district,” he said. “The people were the difference.“

But Meuser knows he still has a lot of work to do.

“Our mission is to ensure the 9th Congressional District is represented by someone who will go to Washington to work with President Trump to get things done, and not be an obstructionist,” Meuser said.

He was sure to thank his former opponent, Hackett, for his support this time around.

But Meuser said the biggest difference in 2018 was an extensive grassroots network and the support of elected officials and community leaders that he and his supporters developed over the last 10 years.

“It takes time and work to run a successful campaign,” Meuser said. “We had the support of Veterans for Trump and the Making America Great PAC that made a huge difference.”

Meuser said his campaign was helped by visiting all counties in the 9th District, holding multiple events in every county.

Meuser feels President Trump’s agenda is in the best interests of all Americans.

“Conservative policies are being put into action and Americans are seeing the benefits,” he said. “The president has restored pride in our nation by leading the effort to reduce taxes, create jobs, rebuild our military and is working to secure our borders.”

Meuser described himself as “a problem-solving conservative with business experience.”

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By Bill O’Boyle

boboyle@timesleader.com

Reach Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.