Trump-backed Parnell loses guardianship, suspends campaign


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Sean Parnell, the candidate endorsed by former President Donald Trump for the US Senate in Pennsylvania, on Monday suspended his campaign after he lost his case in a power struggle. raised his three children, of which the judge said he believed the allegations were abused by Parnell’s estranged wife.

In a statement, Parnell said he was devastated by the judge’s decision and planned to ask the judge to reconsider, but he was unable to continue his campaign.

The high-stakes campaign in the battleground state could help determine control of the US Senate in next year’s election.

The decision by a Butler County judge came two weeks after Parnell denied his estranged wife’s allegations that he hurt her and her children.

The judge, James Arner, wrote in an order Monday that Parnell’s estranged wife, Laurie Snell, would have sole legal custody of the school-age children, as well as guardianship. physical main. Parnell will have physical guardianship on three weekends each month, Arner wrote.

Snell is the “more reliable witness,” Arner summed up in her 16-page opinion, saying she can remember and describe details convincingly.

Pennsylvania’s Senate seat is opening with the retirement in 2023 of two-term US Republican Senator, Pat Toomey, and both Republicans and Democrats have a large pool of candidates in the state. politically divided.

Parnell’s withdrawal comes as many in the state’s Republican Party remain undecided on their field, including conservative commentator Kathy Barnette, real estate investor Jeff Bartos and ambassador Carla Sands. of Trump in Denmark.

Also more swirly is a suggestion from Mehmet Oz, a cardiac surgeon and longtime TV host “Dr. Oz Show,” who rose to fame as an Oprah Winfrey supporter — that he was being encouraged to run in the Republican primaries.

Parnell’s withdrawal represents a major blow to Trump, who enthusiastically endorsed Parnell in September with the encouragement of his eldest son.

Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich said Trump and Parnell spoke before Parnell’s announcement and that Parnell informed Trump of his intention to suspend his campaign.

He said on Twitter that the race for the Pennsylvania Senate “remains a top priority” for the former president and that “gathering our movement behind the best US No. .”

Parnell’s candidacy was a regular presence in the case, with the view noting that Parnell argued that Snell “was motivated to embarrass him in public and derail his political career.” while Snell argued that Parnell “was motivated to preserve his public image and political career. ”

Snell testified about how Parnell endured years of anger and abuse, including once when he strangled her so much that she had to bite him to get free and another time when he slapped one of the girls. their child to the point of leaving a weld mark on the back of the child’s shirt.

Instead, Parnell’s testimony, which he found “less credible,” said that Parnell was “a bit evasive” and simply denied Snell’s allegations.

“In reviewing the credible evidence, I found that Sean Parnell committed a number of abuses in the past” against Snell, Arner wrote. He also believes Parnell slapped the child, as Snell testified, Arner wrote.

However, the fact that Snell had previously agreed that Parnell could spend significant periods of time unattended indicates that she did not see him as a harm to the children, Arner wrote, he wrote.

Snell’s attorney, Jen Gilliland Vanasdale, said Snell was “very grateful that justice prevailed”.

Testifying under oath on November 8, Parnell denied Snell’s allegations, saying he never strangled or pinned her down, and never hit one of their children in a fit of rage. .

Snell and Parnell have lived apart for at least three years, but have split custody of the children equally.

Parnell’s history with his wife became a topic of the Republican primary campaign, days after Trump endorsed it.

Parnell, a richly decorated former Ranger who commanded a platoon in Afghanistan, wrote a memoir about his service in Afghanistan, which became a bestseller. New York Times. He has also written four action novels and emerged as a frequent guest on Fox News programs before running for Congress last year.

Trump’s endorsement came in early September, when Parnell was a guest on conservative cable news shows and podcasts to discuss the Taliban taking control of Afghanistan before American forces withdrew.

Even in the detention case headlines, Trump bolstered his support for Parnell by scheduling a fundraiser with Donald Trump Jr. on January 25 at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida.


Associated Press journalist Jill Colvin in New York contributed to this report. Follow Marc Levy on Twitter at https://twitter.com/timelywriter.

https://www.yourbasin.com/news/trump-backed-parnell-loses-custody-battle-suspends-campaign/ Trump-backed Parnell loses guardianship, suspends campaign


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