Pennsylvania Holds Its Primaries Today. Here’s What to Watch.

Pennsylvania Holds Its Primaries Today. Here’s What to Watch.

Pennsylvanians are heading to the polls on Tuesday, with a handful of House primary races in the spotlight.

The contest getting the most attention is the Democratic primary in the Pittsburgh-based 12th District, where Representative Summer Lee, who has been outspoken in support of a cease-fire in Gaza, is facing Bhavini Patel, who has attacked Ms. Lee as anti-Israel and outside the political mainstream.

Ms. Lee, a first-term representative who is part of the progressive “Squad” and narrowly won her primary in 2022 over a more centrist candidate, was one of the first members of Congress to criticize Israel’s actions in Gaza and call for an immediate cease-fire. That angered some Jewish voters in her district, though national pro-Israel groups like AIPAC have not gotten involved in her race, as they have in others. Ms. Patel has been vastly outraised in the contest, and the once-expected ideological battle over Israel has fizzled in much of the district.

On the other side of the aisle and the state — in the First District, in the suburbs north of Philadelphia — Representative Brian Fitzpatrick, one of the most moderate Republicans in the House, is facing a primary challenge from an anti-abortion activist, Mark Houck.

Mr. Fitzpatrick is one of a small number of Republicans representing districts that Joseph R. Biden Jr. carried in 2020. He won his last two general elections with relative ease. But if Republican voters nominate Mr. Houck — who was acquitted last year of charges that involved assaulting a Planned Parenthood volunteer outside an abortion clinic — it could make the district more competitive for Democrats, given the political potency of abortion.

Two other primaries may also set up competitive general-election contests.

In the Seventh District, three Republicans are vying to face Representative Susan Wild, a Democrat who won by just two points in 2022. And in the 10th District, six Democrats are running to face Representative Scott Perry, a Republican who was closely involved with Mr. Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

The presidential and Senate races are also on the ballot, but are not competitive. Mr. Biden and former President Donald J. Trump clinched their respective nominations last month, and Senator Bob Casey and his Republican challenger, David McCormick, are running unopposed in their primaries.

The polls are open until 8 p.m. Eastern time.

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