- John Maher on Tuesday won the Republican nomination for Pennsylvania auditor general.

The state representative from Allegheny County defeated Frank Pinto in the GOP primary with 68 percent of the vote, based on returns from 54 percent of the state's precincts.

Maher, 53, is a certified public accountant and founder of a Pittsburgh accounting firm.

In his victory speech Tuesday night, Maher said, "Today, voters declared loud and clear [that] Pennsylvania deserves an auditor as auditor general."

Pinto, 67, is a retiree from Dauphin County who worked for the state Senate Republican staff and headed a bank-lobbying group.

The auditor general is the state's fiscal watchdog. The office has been held for the past eight years by Democrat Jack Wagner, who's stepping down after serving the maximum two terms allowed by law.

State Rep. Eugene DePasquale, of York County, was unopposed for the Democratic nomination and faces Maher in November.

- Associated Press