Primary Voters Choose Candidates in Pennsylvania

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Voters went to the polls yesterday to pick their party candidates for Pennsylvania’s Senate race.

Democrats

Senator Arlen Specter (D-PA) “on Tuesday lost a Democratic primary in his bid for a sixth term after taking the risky step of switching from the GOP,” the AP reports.

Voters picked U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak as the party’s nominee and rejected the 80-year-old Specter in his first Democratic campaign since his Republican Party defection.

Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ):

“Congratulations to Joe Sestak on winning a hard-fought primary. Both Arlen Specter and Joe Sestak deserve credit for waging thoughtful, spirited campaigns. I have tremendous respect for Arlen, who has been a loyal member of the Democratic caucus. With his support, Democrats passed landmark health care reform, a jobs package, and of course the Economic Recovery Act, which saved the nation from an economic abyss.

“Joe Sestak has a compelling life story, and a powerful message of change. He knows what is wrong with Washington, and if elected to the Senate will shake up how business is done in the Capitol.

“This November, Pennsylvania voters will face a choice between a Democrat who is focused on creating jobs and the needs of the middle class, and an extreme right-winger who made his profits trading derivatives on Wall Street. After working on Wall Street, Pat Toomey went to Congress where he racked up an extremist voting record that would make Rick Santorum look moderate.  If elected, Pat Toomey would do even more to protect the big banks, Wall Street, the oil companies and the insurance companies – all at the expense of Pennsylvania’s middle class.”

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV):

“Arlen Specter has been a valuable member of our caucus over this past year. Without Arlen’s support, we could not have passed health insurance reform, the Recovery Act or other key parts of our agenda. I am extremely grateful to Senator Specter for his career of service to the commonwealth of Pennsylvania and to our nation.

“Joe Sestak served our nation admirably in the Navy for over 30 years and has been a tireless advocate for the people of the 7th district in Pennsylvania for the last four years. He will bring that dedication and tenacity to the commonwealth of Pennsylvania and will stand on the side of middle-class families. We will wholeheartedly support Congressman Sestak as the Democratic nominee, and we look forward to working with him in the 112th Congress as the junior Senator from Pennsylvania.”

Republicans

Former U.S. Representative Pat Toomey “is the Republican nominee to run for Senate in Pennsylvania,” the AP reports.

National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman John Cornyn (R-TX):

“With Pat Toomey’s primary victory today in Pennsylvania, I am confident that this seat will be one of the strongest pick-up opportunities for Republicans this November. As a former Congressman and small business owner, Toomey has a record of achievement helping businesses expand and creating new jobs, and he has earned voters’ trust as a commonsense leader who will fight for the checks-and-balances that Pennsylvania families, seniors, farmers, and job creators deserve.

“The contrast in this campaign could not be more clear. Liberal Congressman Joe Sestak emerged as the Democrats’ victor thanks to the left-wing activists who championed his candidacy during the final stretch of the campaign. Sestak has voted in lockstep with Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats in Washington nearly 98 percent of the time during the current Congress, and he has been endorsed by left-wing groups like MoveOn.org and NARAL. Sestak’s own party leaders called his potential nomination ‘cataclysmic’ for their chances this November because he is simply too liberal to appeal to Pennsylvania voters statewide.

“Pat Toomey is a proven leader who will continue to fight for lower taxes and smaller government, and he will stand up to President Obama and the Washington Democrats’ out-of-control economic agenda. That’s why I am confident that Pat Toomey will be elected the next U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania this November.”

(credit image – playle)

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