The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

August 6, 2008

Russell opens campaign to unseat Murtha

William Russell is back on the campaign trail.

The 12th Congressional District Republican candidate, who is attempting to unseat longtime Democratic U.S. Rep. John Murtha, held his first Cambria County campaign event Wednesday.

It was a modest affair on a back porch in Upper Yoder Township. But Russell said he is gaining momentum.

“This campaign has heard from thousands of people over the past few weeks,” he said.

Russell, who spent his career in the military and served in both Iraq wars, nearly saw his campaign end in February when a judge ruled that he had not gathered enough valid petition signatures to appear on the primary ballot.

But with no other GOP candidates running, Russell garnered thousands of write-in votes to easily secure his party’s nomination.

Russell, who moved here from the Washington, D.C., area to challenge Murtha, finished 90 days of active military duty and began campaigning last week.

Military policy – and Iraq in particular – remains the centerpiece of his platform.

While Murtha has called for U.S. troops to be withdrawn from Iraq, Russell argues that such a move would appease America’s enemies.

More information is available on his Web site,

Murtha, who has served the 12th District since 1974, is one of the most powerful Democrats in the House. His campaign Web site is

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