Joe “Way To Step In It” Sestak And Mayor Bloomberg

Joe Sestak, the Democrat’s pick to replace Arlen Specter as senator from Pennsylvania, has been dogged by claims that he harbors sympathies to radical Islamic organizations.

So to show that he is a true-blue maverick independent, the Admiral brought New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg to Philadelphia, yesterday, to endorse him.

What Bloomberg ended up doing was answering a lot of questions regarding his endorsement of  the Islamic Victory Mosque at the site of the 9/11 attacks.

Way to go Joe. It’s almost like getting the CAIR executive director to write a defense of your appearance at a CAIR rally.

Joe “XXXXXX” Sestak Said Yes To Teachers

Congressman Joe “XXXXXX” Sestak was among the 247 representatives, 245 of which were Democrats, who voted yes, Aug. 10, on the XXXXXX Act of XXXX.

Really, that’s the name of the bill for which he voted. If you really want a good laugh — or  maybe cry — H.R. 1586 terms itself:  An act to modernize the air traffic control system, improve the safety,reliability, and availability of transportation by air in the UnitedStates, provide for modernization of the air traffic control system,reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration, and for other purposes.

What it ended up doing was shovel $10 billion to the teachers unions while cutting money that had been budgeted for defense and energy research.

And, no the bill did not end up taxing the bonuses of CEOs of firms getting TARP ballots despite an attempt to do so.

And as far as I can see not much if anything went to modernizing the air traffic control system.

The Republicans voting for the bill were Michael “The Usual Suspect” Castle of Delaware and Joseph “Being From New Orleans Cuts Him A Lot Of Slack” Cao of Louisiana.


Dem Beats Gleason’s Choice To Keep Murtha Seat

Mark Critz, the aide to the late Congressman John Murtha, won a special election Tuesday to fill the remainder of his term which ends Jan. 3.

Critz, a Democrat, easily beat Republican Tim Burns, who state GOP Chairman Rob Gleason had tapped over Bill Russell, the retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who ran against Murtha in 2008.

Critz got 53 percent of the vote to Burns’ 45 percent with Libertarian Demo Agoris getting the rest.

There will be a rematch in November for a fresh term since Burns beat Russell in the GOP congressional primary race while Critz defeated two novice primary challengers.

In other races extreme liberal Congressman Joe Sestak ended turncoat Arlen Specter’s career beating the party-endorsed incumbent in the Democrat U.S. Senate primary. He will face Republican Pat Toomey this fall who easily beat activist Peg Luksik.

Attorney General Tom Corbett won the Republican gubernatorial primary over tenacious Sam Rohrer, the representative for the 128th District in the State House. His likely opponent in the general election will be Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato who won the four-man Democrat race.

What might complicate the race a bit is Robert Allen Mansfield , a sergeant in the National Guard with service in Iraq, who has announced that he will run as a independent candidate. Mansfield is an African-American conservative from Philadelphia who had been a Republican and who has a fascinating life story. 

In the Democrat lieutenant governor race,  it appears rather shockingly that Scott Conklin who represents the 77th District in the State House has beaten endorsed candidate Jonathan Saidel, the former Philadelphia city controller, and Doris Smith-Ribner, a retired Commonwealth Court judge.

In the GOP lieutenant governor race, the winner of a field of nine is very unshockingly  Bucks County Commissioner Jim Cawley, who was strongly pushed by Tom Corbett.

Double Voting In Murtha Land

UPDATE: According to the Pennsylvania Independent, there were 178 double ballots distributed, of which 120 went to Republicans, 55 went to Democrats and three went to independents.

Upon realizing her mistake, Amber Lilley, a Democrat and the judge of elections at the North Union Township Fourth Precinct, contacted Fayette County Election Bureau Director Larry Blosser who directed her to secure the cast ballots and re-set theelectronic voting machines.

The ballots will be held and the election board will hold a meeting to decide what to do with them.

In a precinct in which the late John Murtha won with 62 percent of the vote two years ago, 175 people were given two votes to cast this morning in the special election between Republican Tim Burns and Democrat Mark Critz, who had been Murtha’s aide, to fill the remaining seven months of Murtha’s term in Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District.

The precinct judge of elections at North Union 4 in Fayette County says she mistakenly thought she was required to give separate ballots for the primary and general elections.

Murtha beat Republican Bill Russell with 58 percent of the vote in 2008.

There have also been reports about Critz illegally campaigning inside polling places in Cambria County.

It’s Primary Day In Pa

It’s primary election day in Pa. with the polls opening at 7 in the morning and closing at 8 p.m., and what will be decided is who the major party candidates are for the general election on Nov. 2.
Returns can be found here .
There will also be a special election to determine who will represent Pennsylvania’s 12th District in Congress for the remainder of the term left vacant by John Murtha’s Feb. 9 death. The term will end Jan. 3, 2011.
Senate Races
The race getting the most attention is the Democratic U.S. Senate primary fight between incumbent and party-endorsed party-switcher Arlen Specter and Congressman Joe Sestak of the 7th District who is not seeking re-election to his congressional seat. Polls show it to be neck and neck.

Seeking the GOP U.S. Senate nomination are businessman and former Congressman Pat Toomey and activist Peg Luksik. Toomey is the strong favorite.
12th Congressional District

The special election has Republican businessman Tim Burns facing off against Democrat Mark Critz , who was Murtha’s aide and touts himself as a knowledgeable Washington insider.
There is also a primary race, however, and it is in the realm of possibility that the winner of the special election will not be on the November ballot. The GOP race is between Burns and William Russell who was the Republican candidate for the seat in 2008.
Critz has an easier path with his opponents being novices Ryan Bucchianeri and Ronald Mackell Jr.
Other Congressional Primary Contests
3rd District

Incumbent Kathy Dahlkemper has a Democratic primary challenger in Mel Marin. Republicans seeking to take on the winner in November are Clayton Grabb, Martha Moore, Steven Fisher, Mike Kelly, Ed Franz, and Paul Huber.
4th District

Keith Rothfus and former U.S. attorney Mary Beth Buchanan battle to be the GOP nominee vs. incumbent Dem Jason Altmire.
6th District

Manan  Trivedi and Doug Pike are striving to be the Democrat nominee while GOP incumbent Jim Gerlach faces a challenge from Patrick Henry Sellers. 
8th District

Republicans seeking to take on Democrat incumbent Patrick Murphy are Michael Fitzpatrick, Gloria Carlineo, James Jones and Ira Hoffman.
10th District

Republicans Malcolm Derk, David Madeira and Thomas Marino are fighting to be the nominee against vulnerable Democrat incumbent Christopher Paul Carney.
11th District

Democrat incumbent Paul E. Kanjorski faces a primary challenge from Corey O’Brien. Winner takes on Republican Lou Barletta in November.
13th District

Republicans seeking the nomination to take on Democrat incumbent Allyson Schwartz in November are Brian P. Haughton, Joshua Quinter and Carson Dee Adcock.
15th District

Republican incumbent Charles Dent faces a primary challenge from Mat Benol. Winner faces Democrat John B. Callahan in November.
17th District

Democrat incumbent Tim Holden faces a primary challenge from Sheila Dow-Ford. Seeking the GOP nomination are Dave Argall, Allen Griffith, Josh First and Frank Ryan.
19th District
Republican incumbent Todd Platts faces a primary challenge from Michael Smeltzer. Winner faces Democrat Ryan Sanders in November.
Governor Races
In the GOP governor’s race, party-endorsed Attorney General Tom Corbett is facing  challenge from State Rep. Sam Rohrer and it appears to have him surprisingly worried .
The Democrat who want the gubernatorial nomination are
Dan Onorato, the Allegheny Countyexecutive; State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams, who represents the 8th District which includes large parts of southwest Philadelphia andsoutheast Delaware County,  Jack Wagner, the state auditor general; and Joe Hoeffel, a Montgomery County commissioner.
Lt. Gov Races
With regard to the lieutenant governor slot, nine Republicans are seeking it. They are:
Chet Beiler — former Lancaster County GOP chairman
Steve Johnson– York County businessman
Russ Diamond,founder of PaCleanSweep
BillyMcCue, a businessman
JohnKennedy, a former state representative
Jim Cawley, a Bucks County Commissioner who calls himself a “fiscal conservative” and is being pushed by Corbett.
Jean Craige Pepper, who once ran for state treasurer and whose platform seems to be that she’s the only girl in the game.
Stephen Urban, a Luzerne County Commissioner
Daryl Metcalfe, the state representative for the 12th District who just submitted a bill based on Arizona’s illegal immigration law.

The Democrats running for lieutenant governor are party-endorsed Jonathan Sadel, a former Philadelphia city controller;  DorisSmith-Ribner, a retired Commonwealth Courth judge; and Scott A. Conklin, the state rep for the 77th District.
State Senate Races
While there are no contested Republican State Senate primaries, there are several on the Democrat ticket which are:
4th Senatorial District

W. Lamont Thomas
Leanna Washington (incumbent)
6th Senatorial District


(seat held by Republican Tommy Tomlinson)
John Jordan
Bryan Allen
8th Senatorial District

Anthony Hardy Williams (incumbent who is also running for lieutenant governor)
Carmen Hopson
14th Senatorial District

(Seat being vacated by Democrat Raphael Musto)
John T. Yudichak
Tom Leighton
22nd Senatorial District

(Seat being vacated by Democrat Robert J. Mellow who is retiring to enjoy a $313,000 annual pension )
Joseph J. Corcoran
Charles J. Volpe
Jim Wansacz
John Blake
Christopher Doherty
Christopher Phillips
32nd Senatorial District

Ronald Gallo
Richard Kasunic (incumbent)
Other races
To see the contest primaries in the 203 State House districts visit here .
To see the races for State Democrat Committee visit here
To see the races for State Republican Committee visit here .

Why The GOP Attacks On Rohrer?

Conventional wisdom holds that party-endorsed Tom Corbett , who is Pennsylvania’s attorney general, is a sure bet as the GOP’s gubernatorial candidate but with a handful of days left till the May 18 primary the establishment has launched a massive strike on lone opponent state Rep Sam Rohrer who represents the 128th District and is GOP chairman of the House Finance Committee.

The attack came in a mass mailer highlighting Rohrer’s vote for the controversial 2005 pay raise which caused numerous legislators to deservedly lose their jobs, and is likely the most embarrassing thing on Rohrer’s record.

Given time and resources — which he lacks — Rohrer would likely dodge this bullet as he has in his House races since he is may be the least greedy politician in the Commonwealth.

He and his wife, Ruth Ann, declared $83,650 in 2008, most of which was his $71,112 legislative salary, which showed him to be by far the poorest of those seeking the governor’s office. They also showed he gave $16,187 to charity that year, which was by far the most of the candidates.

In his unflagging underdog campaign, Rohrer’s constant theme has been the financial crisis facing the state and how it was possible to fix it.

Corbett Quits Scheduled GOP Debate

PCN,  the non-profit cable network covering Pennsylvania government and culture,  has announced that it is canceling the debate scheduled for tomorrow between State Rep. Sam Rohrer and Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett after Corbett announced he would not attend. Rohrer and Corbett are the candidates in the GOP gubernatorial primary which is May 18.

Rohrer said both teams had confirmed participation and that he remains willing to debate.

The debate was to be held at 1 p.m. at PCN’s studio at Camp Hill and co-hosted by  ABC27 and the Pennsylvania Independent.

A call-In program was to follow the live debate in which viewers would be able to directly address the guest.

In other election news, State Rep. Bryan Lentz (D-161) who is almost certainly going to be the Democratic nominee in the race to replace Congressman Joe Sestak in the 7th District, has had a turnout of five persons at town halls he held Monday and Tuesday in Brookhaven and Radnor despite the governments of both municipalities being controlled by Democrats.

Specter Takes Gloves Off With Admiral Joe

So it is a horse race in the Pennsylvania Democrat senate primary.  Showing why he’s not called Snarlin’ Arlen for nothing, the incumbent Specter, yesterday, released a blistering attack ad against challenger Congressman Joe Sestak (D-7) called “No Show Joe” in which he notes Sestak was “relieved of duty in the Navy for creating a poor command climate” and has the “worst attendance of any Pennsylvania congressman”.

Until this month , Specter, who is the party-endorsed candidate, had been leading the congressman handily in the polls.

Pass the popcorn.

Why Santorum Endorsed Specter

Maybe Pennsylvania conservatives owe Rick Santorum an apology.

Many stayed home in 2006 setting the stage for Democrat Bob Casey to take the senate seat Santorum held since 1995. Some even actively worked against him.

And it was all because Santorum endorsed incumbent Arlen Specter over insurgent Pat Toomey in the 2004 GOP senate primary.  Yes, children Arlen Specter was a Republican in those days.

Santorum has now revealed to Specter’s consternation that the endorsement was contingent on Arlen supporting President Bush’s judicial nominees.

Could this be something Santorum is making up? Well, Specter unequivocally supported Bush’s judicial nominees, a thing that is biting him in his butt now that he has switched parties.

Congressman Joe “The Red Admiral” Sestak has crept to within two points of the party — that’s Democrat Party  — endorsed Specter in the latest Rasmussen poll to be the Dem’s senate nominee this November.

With 10 percent undecided, I think I’d actually put money on The Red Admiral in the May 18 primary.

A Million Pa. Independent Voters To Miss A Primary Choice

Pennsylvania’s primary election is May 18 and, third-party romantics aside,  from it will be chosen the candidates who will be the people who lead this state.

A little over a million of Pennsylvania’s 8.4 million registered voters will not participate in this choice because they have registered as something other than a Republican or Democrat. Pennsylvania is one of 14 closed primary states. The actual breakdown of labels is  36,473 Libertarians; 484,597  “no affiliation”
and 490,526 “other voters.

All but two of those running for governor this year have expressed support for Pennsylvania becoming an open primary state in which one can vote in whatever party’s race regardless of what his registration happens to be.

The dissenters are State Sen. Anthony Williams, a Democrat who represents the 8th District that includes a large part of Delaware County and state Rep. Sam Rohrer, a Republican who represents the 128th District in Berks County.

Williams would like to eliminate primaries altogether and just have a general election.

Rohrer would like to encourage independents to join a major party, which is a reasonable thing. If one is part of a group not choosing its candidate on primary day registering with a major party would give one two shots at how the state would be run. Ironically, Rohrer’s non-establishment campaign would likely be boosted by an open primary.

For the record, there are 4.3 million Democrats and 3.1 million Republicans in the state.