State Rep. Jim Christiana, R-Beaver, announced today that he will not run for Congress in the new Altmire/Critz District 12 seat next year, leaving no known major Republican candidates in the race.
Altmire's 2010 opponent Keith Rothfus was redistricted into Tim Murphy's 18th district in the congressional maps released last week, though he has vowed to move in the 12th. As PoliticsPa notes, the announcement could mean that House Minority Leader Mike Turzai, R-Bradford Woods, could be poised for a run.
Rothfus, a socially conservative attorney, lost to Democratic incumbent Jason Altmire by less than two points in the PA4 race last year. (Rothfus trounced former US Attorney Mary Beth Buchanan in that year's GOP primary.)
Mark Critz beat Republican businessman Tim Burns in last year's PA12 races, but he's now running for the GOP nod for U.S. Senate. (He beat retired Army Lt. Col. Bill Russell in the district's GOP primary.)