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Republican governor candidate Doug Mastriano makes campaign stop in Delaware County

Pennsylvania governor candidate Doug Mastriano stops by Delaware County
Pennsylvania governor candidate Doug Mastriano stops by Delaware County 02:27

ASTON, Pa. (CBS) -- The race for Pennsylvania governor is heating up. The gloves are off between Democrat Josh Shapiro and Republican Doug Mastriano.

Pennsylvanians will elect a new governor for the first time in eight years this November. On Wednesday, one of the candidates in the race made a stop in Aston, Delaware County. The restaurant was at full capacity with more than 300 people inside to hear him speak.

Mastriano, the Republican candidate for Pennsylvania governor, is campaigning on a platform of boosting the state's fossil fuel industry and creating jobs.

"Our goal is to make Pennsylvania the Florida of the north," Mastriano said.

The state senator and former Army colonel spoke before a packed crowd at Gatsby's Bar and Grill during a campaign stop in Aston Wednesday afternoon.

"I appreciate the 30 years he spent serving our country," Austin Hepburn, a Mastriano supporter, said, "and the fact that he wants to continue serving the country. He's got my vote."

Mastriano is running against Democratic Attorney General Josh Shapiro to replace outgoing Gov. Tom Wolf.

Outside the restaurant, Shapiro supporters protested Mastriano's visit.

"I have one little piece of advice for you, Doug," state Sen. John Kane said. "That advice is, get back on that horse that you rode in here on and giddy up."

A recent poll puts Shapiro with more than 48% support and Mastriano at 44%.

Shapiro's campaign paints Mastriano as an extremist backed by former President Donald Trump. 

"He already tried in Washington to participate in the insurrection," Colleen Guiney, chair of the Delaware County Democratic Party, "and we do not believe that the Pennsylvania voters should have their votes decertified."

Temple University political science professor Michael Sances says with two and a half months until Election Day, there's still plenty of time for both candidates to make their case.

"A lot of people probably know more, hearing more about the Fetterman-Oz race in the Senate," Sances said, "and that one is certainly important too, but in terms of the daily lives of Pennsylvanians, the governor's race is way more important."

Neither Mastriano nor Shapiro was available for an interview on Wednesday.

The election is on Nov. 8. Whoever wins the governor's race will be sworn in on Jan. 17.

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