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Contested races in the state Senate and House and in the U.S. Senate featured incumbents, those seeking higher office and residents seeking an open seat.

In an effort to challenge incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, current U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, backed by President Donald Trump, defeated challenger state Rep. Jim Christiana to take the Republican nomination in Tuesday’s primary.

Barletta mostly had the lead throughout the night, and the Associated Press called the race about 9:45 p.m. Tuesday — the earliest of all the big primary races.

Barletta was also the more popular candidate in Cumberland County, earning 18,217 overall votes, including absentee ballots, compared to 5,273 total votes for Christiana.

In state politics, Sen. John Eichelberger Jr.’s move to vie for a congressional seat left his seat in the 30th Senatorial District open. Only the Republican primary was contested, with Judy Ward and Daniel Kiss looking to take the seat that covers part of Cumberland County, as well as areas west of the county.

Ward won out after largely leading the night, garnering more than 70 percent of the vote in the district. In Cumberland County, with 16 precincts reporting in the senatorial district, Ward also overwhelmed Kiss, earning 2,359 votes compared to Kiss’ 827 votes, according to unofficial data from the bureau of elections.

She will likely face Democrat Emily Best, who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

Another contested Republican primary was in the 92nd Legislative District, which covers Monroe Township in Cumberland County, as well as northern York County. This year’s candidates were all York County natives, with incumbent Rep. Dawn Keefer looking to retain her seat against challengers Joshua Hershey and Curt Werner.

Keefer easily gathered most of the vote in the district, as well as in Cumberland County, earning 515 votes, compared to 227 for Hershey and 49 for Werner.

Keefer will likely face Shanna Danielson, who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

Email Naomi Creason at ncreason@cumberlink.com or follow her on Twitter @SentinelCreason

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