Archive

ShareThis Page
Specter to face primary challenge from Rep. Joe Sestak | TribLIVE.com
News

Specter to face primary challenge from Rep. Joe Sestak

U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak made his Senate challenge to Arlen Specter official this morning with a speech at a V.F.W. hall in his native Delaware County, and in a video posted on his new campaign Web site.

“I am running to be Pennsylvania’s next United States senator because I am committed to passing along a better world to our children. That’s going to take leadership that is committed to the principles of honesty, accountability and hard work,” Sestak said. “The people we sent to Washington to represent you, to look out for you, failed to do so and they must be held accountable.”

Sestak, 57, a former Navy admiral and second-term Congressman, has been campaigning against Specter, 79, for months, including taking a tour of the state’s 67 counties, so the announcement this morning comes as no surprise. He will be at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Oakland at 1:30 p.m. to make the same announcement here.

He plans stops tonight in Johnstown, and tomorrow in Harrisburg and Scranton, in addition to an appearance on “The Colbert Report” on Comedy Central tomorrow night.

The Democratic Primary battle between Specter — a 29-year incumbent who was a Republican until three months ago — and Sestak already turned into a brawl. Sestak has accused Specter of not being a “real Democrat,” saying he switched parties based not on principles, but on polls showing he would lose a Republican primary to former U.S. Rep. Pat Toomey.

Specter accuses Sestak of shirking his duties in the House to campaign against him.

“He hardly deserves a promotion since he has missed 105 House votes this year, which is the worst attendance record of any Pennsylvania Congressman,” Specter campaign manager Christopher Nicholas said today. “He should explain why, when Pennsylvanians are working harder, he can barely show up for work.”

Nicholas said Sestak’s decision to hold off on officially launching his candidacy until today raises questions about whether he can “handle the tough, rapid-fire decisions required of a Senator.”

Sestak, who spent much of his time before coming to Congress deployed overseas with an aircraft carrier battle group, has said he wanted to spend time with his 8-year-old daughter, and make sure she understood the campaign would take him away again for awhile.


TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.