GOP strategist in Pennsylvania, running for governor, investigated in fatal accident on Turnpike
Featured sound system is an independent, non-partisan newsroom powered by The Philadelphia Inquirer in partnership with PennLive / The Patriot-News, TribLIVE / Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and WITF Public Media. Sign up for our free newsletters.
HARRISBURG – Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Gerow was involved in a crash on the Pennsylvania toll freeway in Chester County this week that killed a motorcyclist and closed the freeway for nearly seven hours, said Gerow’s spokesperson on Friday.
Spokesman Kevin Harley confirmed Gerow was the driver and said he “is now fully cooperating with the investigation and will continue to do so”.
“He is anxiously awaiting the state police to complete their investigations and is confident that the investigation will confirm that he was not the cause of the crash,” Harley wrote in an email. “He has been advised that he should not discuss the matter further until the investigation is completed.”
Pennsylvania State Police are investigating the crash, which occurred shortly before 10 p.m. Wednesday on the part of the toll highway through Tredyffrin Township, authorities said.
A state police report on the incident released on Thursday does not name Gerow. He says only that the accident involved a Honda motorcycle and a “Mercedes Benz 300”, both traveling westbound on the toll highway. He said the agency had yet to identify the man who was killed.
“The investigation is currently active and ongoing to determine the circumstances surrounding Mercedes’ involvement,” according to the report. “PSP is trying to identify the rider of the motorcycle and inform the next of kin. “
State police officials did not respond to multiple requests for information about the incident or investigation on Friday.
Gerow, a longtime Harrisburg-based Republican strategist, announced his gubernatorial candidacy last month, saying he is a “coalition builder” who can unite the GOP and expand his appeal as a Latino immigrant. who found an opportunity in the United States.
He said he would campaign as a “conservative happy warrior,” with a focus on helping the state’s economy after it closed during the pandemic, and making Pennsylvania more attractive to people. companies.
Gerow was born in Brazil and adopted by American missionaries who then returned to the United States.
He began his political career working for Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaign in 1976. He unsuccessfully ran for the state Senate and Congress several times in the 1980s and 1990s, then founded the firm of Harrisburg-based public affairs. Quantum communications in 2001.
It also serves as Vice President of the American Conservative Union, which hosts the annual gathering known as CPAC, and was co-chair of businesswoman Carly Fiorina’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Two weeks ago, Gerow addressed CPAC members at a meeting in Dallas, addressing topics such as culture cancellation, electoral integrity, critical race theory, abortion, and public funding of private schools.
Gerow, who received crowd applause when he mentioned his gubernatorial candidacy, struck a bipartisan note while pointing out that Republicans and Democrats support criminal justice reform.
“Because it’s the right thing to do,” he said.
This story will be updated.
Investigator Editors Chris Brennan and Andrew Seidman contributed to this story.