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Katharine Seelye has an interesting Q&A over at the New York Times' political blog, "The Caucus."

In it, Congressman Joe Sestak talks pretty candidly about his apparent decision (he still leaves a sliver of wiggle room, even in this interview) to challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania.

It's worth heading over to the site for the whole read, but here are a few choice nuggets to be mined from the interview.

1. THE EFFORT TO CLEAR THE PRIMARY SEEMS TO HAVE BACKFIRED
A lot of people who claim to know Congressman Sestak (and at least one insightful commenter here at DailyKos) suspected that any move to clear the Democratic primary for Arlen Specter would actually push Joe Sestak INTO the race, and not OUT OF the race.

That appears to have been correct.

But I will get into it. I think it’s the right thing to do because I was moved so strongly when the Democratic Party people thought they could anoint someone.

He also made it a point of emphasis that he does not feel beholden to the party establishment:

I didn’t come up through the political establishment. I’m not part of the establishment, and I don’t shy away from saying I’m an independent representative of my district.

2. CHANGE WILL BE A BIG PART OF HIS CAMPAIGN MEME
Check this quote out. After being asked if he was at all unnerved by the fairly wide polling gap that exists between himself and Senator Specter (a recent poll had Specter leading 50-21), Congressman Sestak had this to say:

Well, 50 percent after 30 years in the Senate — only 50 percent? But I’m not running against him, I want to create contrasts. The poll is a snapshot in time but there are contrasts between us that this poll doesn’t lay out: A gentleman in the Senate establishment for 30 years, and someone in military for 30 years.

He also drew a contrast on a single issue--health care. I doubt it is a coincidence that when a spokesman for the AFL-CIO was asked about the race on Wednesday, the two issues he specifically cited were EFCA and...health care reform.

3. HE KNOWS HE HAS TO BE DEFERENTIAL TO OBAMA, EVEN IF THE W.H. ENDORSES SPECTER
Congressman Sestak, at multiple points in the interview, seems to go out of his way to praise President Obama. This is an interesting and difficult dance for him--Obama is, by all reports, supporting his opponent, but Sestak cannot alienate Obama supporters. Sestak dances with this rather well, by (if anything) going to Obama's LEFT:

I have strongly supported him. I would have been more bold and aggressive for government intervention on the economy. I would have done more than $825 billion.... But I’m very supportive of his blueprint for retooling the economy and I’m there for this president because I think he’s got it right.

And look at how deftly Sestak handles the question of the Obama administration's tacit endorsement of Senator Specter:

I was taken with what Obama said at Arizona — that the core mission of a president is to create opportunities for everyone. I think he recognizes that the opportunity for Pennsylvanians to have someone else to vote for isn’t to be shut down.

Taken in its entirety, two conclusions can be drawn from this interview--(1) it is exceedingly likely that Sestak will make good on his intentions and get into the race and (2) he is going to be a very tough out.

The good news for Democrats in general, and the DSCC in particular: given the political skills of the two men in question, facing Patrick Toomey after this is going to feel like playing the softball team from Ed's Auto Supply after you just finished playing the New York Yankees.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sat May 30, 2009 at 04:55 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Whether or not Sestak runs, (7+ / 0-)

    he could also be maneuvering to "get something" for dropping out of the race -- from Rendell, as any idiot should realize Obama's White House will toe the ethical line on any political maneuvering they do on behalf of Specter.

    I still think Specter shoulda just switched careers

  •  Every time he's been on TV lately--which has (9+ / 0-)

    been fairly frequent; he's been very impressive---not shying away from giving straight answers.

  •  It's a Wake-Up Call (16+ / 0-)

    If Sestak challenges, even unsuccessfully, it will still put the idea in the heads of DINOs that there's no free ride if they're going to behave like Republicans. I hope Sestak goes for it and I hope he wins.

    Canada - where a pack of smokes is ten bucks and a heart transplant is free.

    by dpc on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:00:31 PM PDT

  •  I am in the minority here but the risk (10+ / 0-)

    doesn't justify the reward. First of all, with Sestak's departure from PA-7, it opens up a very competitive district. This district sent Curt Weldon to Congress for 20 years. It is only D+3. Like many ancestrally southern Democratic House Districts, where Republicans now hold federal office, most of the local officeholders are all Republicans. So Sestak's departure creates a very tough open seat race.

    Secondly people mention Bryan Lentz, an Iraq war veteran, who represents a State House district. This is great that he is going to run, but his district is very tough for a Democrat still. Democrats have only a 104-99 lead in the State House of Representatives. That margin is very tenuous.

    Thus, in 2010, we now have to sweep three races for this to be worthwhile. Sestak has to beat Specter and win the general election. Lentz has to win PA-7. And whoever runs for his State House district MUST absolutely win. So we need to--pardon Bush's infamous phrase--hit the trifecta.

    Also this is the last election before redistricting. The Democrats are a minority in the State Senate. They need to either hold onto to the State House or keep the Governor. Otherwise they will face a brutal redistricting that could very well eliminate Kathy Dahlkemper, Jason Altimire, Tim Holden, Chris Carney, Patrick Murphy, and Allyson Schwartz from their districts. The GOP dominated the process in the 2000 redistricting.

    I would urge people to reconsider this decision. I know how much people don't like Specter, but he's 79 and has had a multitude of health problems. Even if he wins in 2010 he probably won't run again in 2016.

  •  Thats the way to do it joe! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chumley

    I can't find the email, but wrote directly to the Sestak office last month when Joe was seeming to needle the President:

    I said DON'T DO THAT. In fact, GO OUT OF YOUR WAY TO PRAISE President Obama. You don't want Obama as your enemy. You just don't want that.

    I'm with Joe all the way!

  •  Especially since Ed's Auto Supply just went out (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dump Terry McAuliffe, jennyL

    of business. The last sale wasn't very interesting, either; just the same stuff he'd always been selling, but people didn't want it anymore. Ed couldn't compete with Jim's Car Shop downtown: Jim listened to his customers, and did what they needed instead of what he wanted.

    They tortured people to get false confessions to fraudulently justify our invading Iraq.

    by Ponder Stibbons on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:08:00 PM PDT

  •  Ed Rendell giving the hardsell on The Ed Show (4+ / 0-)

    ..for Specter. The really hard sell.

    I imagine there are plenty of PA Democrats who will resent this.

    http://videocafe.crooksandliars.com/...

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:08:33 PM PDT

  •  I'm torn on this one (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew, Wary, sethyeah

    Well, my heart tells me to go with Sestak. My head says that his chances aren't all that good (Pennsyvlania is not a progressive blue state and the party machinery, not to mention Obama, is behind Specter. Furthermore, if Sestak runs in the primary, he won't - I believe - be able to defend his seat. Since his district is not a solid blue one, I fear this might be another seat we're opening up to the Republicans.

    Sestak is basing his appeal on Specter's vulnerability of not being a reliable Dem.
    If Specter comes out and says he'll support EFCA and whatever health plan the Dems come up with, that will furthermore blunt Sestak's argument.

    On the other hand (call if my "second head"), nothing says that if Specter wins another 6 years that he'll stay a Dem or not return to his "maverick" role.

    Oh well.

    •  I hope this will ease your mind: (5+ / 0-)
      1. You could open up a can of spam, slap it between two slices of wonder bread, write "D" on it with a sharpie, put it on the ballot, and that spam sandwich would beat  Pat Toomey.
      1. We can win Sestak's old district. We've done it before. And if we lose it? Worth it anyway.
      1. Specter will be weak no matter what he does. He's running on name recognition now, and he's still just at 50. He's soft. Sestak has plenty of room to grow.
      •  Thanks (0+ / 0-)

        I didn't need comforting for point 1. Point 3 is good news if true. Point 2 requires (a) is there a strong Dem candidate in view? and (b) the scenario that
        makes me unhappy is Sestak losing the primary and we lose his district too.

        Also, Sestak is not really a "radical" though he'll probably get some progressive themes going. And I would probably end up supporting him financially, especially if Specter bails on major Dem legislation. (No way would I support Specter financially in any case).

      •  We wont just lose his district (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jennyL

        We will lose six districts because Republicans will have control of redistricting.  Its not "worth it".  

        •  If that's your big beef (0+ / 0-)

          then the problem isn't Sestak running for Senator, the problem is State Reps running for Sestak's seat. I'd sacrifice Sestak's house seat to get him into the Senate, for sure.

          "I used to have goals. They were *evil* goals, but they were *goals*."--Dr. Doofenschmirtz

          by ChurchofBruce on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:50:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Rethugs won't have control of redistricting (0+ / 0-)

          in my state, UpstateRepub.

          The Rethug Party are anti-American traitors. The Congressional Rethugs form a fifth column intent on destruction of America.

          by IhateBush on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:15:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  How do you know? (0+ / 0-)

            They have a good chance to win the governorship and will probably be favored to take the state House if Lentz leaves his seat and runs.  

            •  Because I actually live in PA (0+ / 0-)

              The Rethugs will lose the Governorship and get crushed in the Philly suburbs as long as Pat Toomey heads their ticket.  Wingnuts like Toomey is poison in the Philly suburbs, and he will hurt the Rethugs up and down the ballot.

              I think the Dems will pick up seats in the state House and state Senate in 2010 as they'll pick up quite a bit in the Philly suburbs.  They will also hold the Governorship.  The Rethugs know this, which is why they want someone other than Pat Toomey running for the Senate.

              The Rethug Party are anti-American traitors. The Congressional Rethugs form a fifth column intent on destruction of America.

              by IhateBush on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:37:25 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Also Lentz will win PA-7 (0+ / 0-)

              and his seat will be held by a Democrat.  The area has moved rapidly to the Dems for every race but the very local ones.  

              The area might be traditionally Rethug, but there are a lot of RINOs and the newcomers are heavily Democratic.

              The Rethug Party are anti-American traitors. The Congressional Rethugs form a fifth column intent on destruction of America.

              by IhateBush on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:39:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Toomey is underestimated (0+ / 0-)

        He won three U.S. House races in a district that was more swing than hard-right.  I realize the lay of the land has changed significantly since then.  But it's not like he's been wholly unsuccessful as a candidate.

        "Rain Clearing, Breezy Overnight."

        by looking italian on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:11:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Sestak will clearly be the better (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mconvente

      Senator. And he'll have no trouble against Toomey in the primary.

      It's a no-brainer.

    •  I have mixed feelings about a primary (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      icebergslim, sethyeah

      but I dont think Sestak would be a weaker candidate in the general. I think he is pretty mainstream on the issues, even if he is challenging Specter to the left on some issues, and he has a very impressive military background.

  •  Ed's Auto Supply (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklynbadboy, sethyeah

    could crush the Yankees, so I don't think your analogy is good.

    Toomey is toast, though, either way.

  •  The Obama thing will be no problem (6+ / 0-)

    Remember -- lots of establishment Dems (Clinton, Clinton, Dodd and Obama to name a few) endorsed Lieberman in the primary in '06, and they had no trouble supporting Ned Lamont after he won the primary.

    Same will happen here.

    •  Exactly. (2+ / 0-)

      They'll just say "thems the breaks Arlen. See-ya!"

    •  Yeah, I was about to say (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jim bow, mconvente

      I think Obama will probably be deferential to Sestak in the primary as well.

      •  In public anyway (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sethyeah

        Behind the scenes I think Rahm and the boys will do everything they can to force Sestak out.

        Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

        by Scarce on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:21:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  That seems to be his style. (0+ / 0-)

        Actually, I'm very interested in what Obama does in the 2010 campaign season -- he doesn't seem that willing to throw his weight around for other Dems.  My take is that he wants to appear non-partisan/above the frayish and not piss off anyone he might potentially need later on.

        IMHO.

      •  I agree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jj32

        I think Obama will be deferential to Sestak as Specter has been running against core Democratic party ideas for the past 30 years.

        I don't think Obama will campaign nearly as hard for Specter as, say, Chris Dodd.  Specter hasn't been doing the difficult party things, i.e. casting the difficult votes, campaigning for unsavory Democratic candidates, etc. that other veteran Democratic Senators have been doing for years.

        •  Yeah, it looks like there will be a lot of (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jim bow, Sam I Am, mdmslle, sethyeah

          big votes coming up this summer/fall. Healthcare, cap and trade, financial regulations, maybe EFCA, Sotomayor confirmation(guess this isnt that difficult a vote compared to the others), and probably more. Will be interesting to see how Specter votes on those issues.  

          •  I don't see financial regulations ... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jj32

            ... as a difficult vote in the name of public opinion the way health care and cap-and-trade are.  I think the main difficulty with financial regulation votes is contributions.

            Anyhow, when are Barney Frank and Chris Dodd coming up with a financial regulations bill?

            And the difficulty of the vote on Sotomayor depends on how she (or any nominee) does in the confirmation hearings.  If Sotomayor performs more like John Roberts, it will be an easy vote for Democrats; if she performs like Robert Bork, it will be a very uncomfortable vote for Democrats.

            •  As far as financial regulations (0+ / 0-)

              I read that they will be written this summer. There was one article which noted some senators had asked for the Obama administration's input on regulating derivatives, which I assumed meant that they were starting to write the bill, but I dont know what the status is yet on that. As far as Sotomayor, I think her hearings will go okay. Chuck Schumer and Cynthia Hogan(Biden's aide), seem to be very familiar with the Judiciary Committee, and so I think they can  guide her through that process. And she has already had one somewhat contentious hearing before a GOP controlled committee ten years ago, and seems she did fine.

          •  I should write that. (0+ / 0-)

            Republicans will offer plenty of politically charged amendments to each bill.  Once we get Al Franken in the Senate, by immediately invoking cloture once the bill comes before the Senate floor, Senate Democrats can limit the number of Republican amendments and difficult votes they will have to cast in order to get a bill passed.

  •  Pennsylvania's Lieberman (6+ / 0-)

    Specter is the Dems ugly baby and the GOP can have him. I like Sestak's nerve in standing up to the notion that a turncoat who is going to get hammered his own primary should somehow be annointed by the Dems because he jumped ship before getting sent to walk the plank by his own. Let Arlen earn it and give Sestak his day in court, he's earned it too and he deserves no less.

  •  Sestak is playing this like Obama (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z, lisastar

    When there was all that chatter that O would run, he went out of his way to praise Hillary Clinton.  He did this from the beginning to the end.

    Specter does not have a LOCK on this and of all the people, Obama should know it.

    Obama will campaign for Sestak, as he promised, but he won't destroy Sestak.

    Sestak, keep it classy.  I am with Sestak ALL THE WAY.

  •  Sestak's pressure will be a real service. (6+ / 0-)

    I hope he runs, and beats Specter.

    But at the very least, it puts pressure on Specter, Obama, and anyone else who made any kind of deals with Specter.  It says:  

    PROVE you're a Democrat, Arlen.  Even more, PROVE you're a Democrat who will help progressive causes most Democrats believe in.  We're not interested in a generic "biparstisan" who mostly breaks Republican, and always has.

    Either act like a Democrat, or hit the road.

    Fox "News" = Republican PRAVDA.

    by chumley on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:25:56 PM PDT

  •  No Sestak fan but (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    polar bear

    ....this Arlen Specter crap is exactly that - crap. The Democratic Party does not need Specter as much as he needs the Democratic Party. Why in the world would the Democratic Party support Specter when any Democrat would beat Toomey?

    Healthcare is a human right, not a commodity.

    by nomorerepukes on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:34:31 PM PDT

  •  Ed Rendell pissed me off on Tweety yesterday (5+ / 0-)

    he really thinks he's the bees knees.  He really thinks that its all about him and that he can make or break any-damn-body-he-wants.

    He was all: "Seskatk is a brillinmat guy. He's talented and we need him in te house...blah blah...but this isnt his time...blah blah. He cant raise the money. he can't do this he can't do that...blah blah".

    I'm like: fuck you Ed. you get ONE frikkin vote just like everybody else. Its the voters who will decide this shit. quit acting like some low-grade don corleone wannabe.

    In some ways I'd like to see sestak run a good race even if he ends up losing. I'd like to see eddie and the "gang" realize they dont call all the shots. Its insulting.

  •  Reminding everyone in the state (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, polar bear

    That he retired from the Navy as a Vice Admiral probably wouldn't hurt with the military vote.

    I say go for it and good luck, sir.

    Let me sleep on it, I'll give you an answer in the morning -Meatloaf

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:40:09 PM PDT

  •  Sestak will raise money nationally... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethyeah

    Specter will raise money from Dem bigwigs and in Penn.  Furthermore I expect some cagey Republicans to throw some money Sestak's way.

    Besides Sestak's campaign will help Specter win the General if Specter wins the Primary.  I man painting Specter as a Republican will garner him support from the moderate right, and Specter and the Rendell and Obama machines will back Specter in the general.  

    I guess the only downside is that the money Specter and Sestak have to spend on the primary could be better spent in the general, both in Penn and in other States where the Dems could steal a seat.  Of course this is their reasoning for the Gillibrand coronation as well.  

    Primary out Arlen Specter. The GOP basically turned their primary battle into the general, and either way they win as a Republican wins the seat.

    by Jonze on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:41:49 PM PDT

  •  Isn't Rendell the real problem, not Obama? (5+ / 0-)

    Rendell has a state-wide machine in PA.  He said yesterday that Specter will crush Sestak, and he's going to assist in that.  Sestak can be deferential to the President all he wants, but Rendell is the real issue.

    I really don't care.  I just want Sestak's running to pressure Specter into voting to break filibusters for the next two years.  Then PA voters can do whatever they want.

  •  where do i send my money? (0+ / 0-)
  •  Steve - a serious question... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sethyeah

    Why would a congressman want to be a senator?  What's the advantage?

    And now, purely for its comedic effect: Palin/Jindal 2012!

    by WSComn on Sat May 30, 2009 at 05:59:16 PM PDT

  •  way i see it is: (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rising sign, Spedwybabs, brein, jennyL

    sestak may not actually be planning to run. But if the idea is to force arlen leftward he'd have to look serious, woudlnt he?

    I'm sayin, play this out with me a sec:

    what if sestak really had no intention of running at all but was just as insulted as many of us when arlen opportunistically switched parties then SAID in plain english he wouldnt e a loyal democrat, didnt like EFCA and wasnt too sure about that health care reform thingy.

    I dont know about you but I'm a feisty broad. If I had the power and position to be a threat, i would.

    There is a reason why Obama's being all nicey nicey to Arlen. But if you think there inst a price to pay for that, you ahvent been paying attention to how obama operates.

    I wouldnt be surprised i f old Rahmbo had a little chat with sestak. there's some serious votes coming up this summer. LONG before the primary starts or anybody has to decalre any damned thing.

    Think about it. Wouldnt YOU be working this thing that way if you were the president and rahm?  I would.  

    As it stands arlen is thinking: I might get a primary challenge but i;m sure i can beat it because I have ed and obama and the dem establishment behind me.  Basically that's ALL arlen has to guarantee him anything. SAo he really is on the hot seat.

    Just my 2 cent CT.

    I'm not convinced Sestak is serious. I'm starting to lean toward a hug kabuki rahmbo style ass rimming of old arlen.

    •  I'm with you. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mdmslle

      I think two things are at work here.

      1.  Sestak is putting himself out there in case Arlen goes back to his shitty, mavericky bullshit ways.  Threatening to run is a good incentive for Arlen to behave, and I wouldn't be entirely shocked if he was being encouraged to do so by the WH.
      1.  We all know Arlen is (a) extremely old and (b) not in the best of health.  I think this is Sestak's way of warming up in the bullpen without being asked to do so.

      When push comes to shove, I'll be mildly surprised if Sestak actually runs.  I just smell bullshit here, I guess.  Half-assed intuition on my part, admittedly.  We need the resources here in PA for other things -- state legislature and ESPECIALLY the Governor's race.  I'd hate to see money squandered on a primary like this, given that Sestak doesn't exactly strike me as a progressive champion and the possible down-ticket consequences detailed above by Oceanstar17.

      Penn State fan? Check out Black Shoe Diaries, a SBNation blog (ding!).

      by rising sign on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:13:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Elect better Democrats! (0+ / 0-)

    My work here is done.

    The only newscaster on Fox that you can trust is Kent Brockman.

    by Van Buren on Sat May 30, 2009 at 06:19:48 PM PDT

  •  WTF? (0+ / 0-)

    "2. CHANGE WILL BE A BIG PART OF HIS CAMPAIGN MEME"

    Campaign "meme"?  WTF?

    Can we start speaking regular folks language instead of LiveJournalese for once?  Nobody who doesn't spend 24/7 on the internet even knows what a "meme" is.  I still don't, except that it's a stupid word and sounds like garbled baby talk.

    Thanks,
    The Language Police

    Now carry on :)

    •  MEME (0+ / 0-)

      a meme is essentially a talking point (a stubborn one)! I'm not sure if its appearances constitute a rhetorical paradime shift, but....

    •  Richard Dawkins... (0+ / 0-)

      He is a very respected evolutionary biologist and he came up with the term "meme" as a contrast to "gene." A "meme" is a like a gene, but it exists as a cultural thing.

      An example is calling homosexuals "gay." that was an idea that replicated and spread and was a very successful meme.

      •  in response to you and the person above (0+ / 0-)

        I know who came up with it and what he originally meant by it, but the word itself was never widely used until the net.kiddies on LiveJournal, ED, 4chan, those sort of sites, started using it to mean (as far as I can tell) internet in-jokes.  Which means it's probably a must-avoid term and concept at this point for the rest of us...

  •  Senator Spector (0+ / 0-)

    Even popes retire at 80 years of age!  You should too...

  •  Any chance Single-Payer Support from Sestek? EOM (0+ / 0-)
  •  A meme is.... (0+ / 0-)

    the opposite of a youyou..:)

  •  Good for Sestak. Now I just hope we can help him (0+ / 0-)

    and he can WIN.

  •  Let me chime in as a resident of PA-07 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Spedwybabs, polar bear

    I'm no expert, but am old enough to know this district has developed an increasing distaste for Republicans.  Weldon survived for so long because of voter inertia, longevity itself, the fact his crookedness and lunacy were hidden for so long, and the fact that Democrats here never ran a strong challenger.  Sestak CRUSHED him by 17 points in 2006, and beat a pretty good GOP opponent by 20 in 2008.  Now, if Sestak is not on the House ballot we would have a tough fight in 2010, but the entire four-county area around Philadelphia has been strongly trending our way for 10-15 years. I simply don't believe Sestak's abandonment of the seat will start an avalanche of risk.  If Bryan Lentz won his state House seat as a newcomer, why wouldn't someone else pick up his slack if he was our House candidate?  And he would have an excellent shot at Sestak's seat.  Plus, there are 21 House seats in PA (I think) and there's no way six of them get redistricted away.  No chance at all.  You just can't freeze everything in amber fearing that any candidate movement will start a domino effect.  ESPECIALLY if Sestak's pressure on Specter makes the old man come across for real of health care and EFCA.  I mean, that's the bottom line, right?

    Andrew Mellon & GOP: 'In a Depression, assets return to their rightful owners'

    by Tuffie on Sat May 30, 2009 at 08:03:38 PM PDT

  •  Arlan will not support EFCA - Door is Open (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    polar bear

    for Joe Sestak to run.

    A close family member is pretty high up in a Union here in PA - and he got a 'courtesy' call from Specter's office today saying that Arlen IS NOT GOING to SUPPORT EFCA or cloture.

    Arlen thinks the Unions in PA will still support him...but he is 100% wrong.  One of the minor rogue unions here in PA told Arlen that EFCA did not matter...but the Big Boys are going to dump Arlen like a sack of hot turds.  

    The door is officially open for Sestak to run.

    Go Joe!

    "But such is the irresistable nature of truth, that all it asks, and all it wants is the liberty of appearing." -Thomas Paine

    by Tommymac on Sat May 30, 2009 at 08:47:52 PM PDT

  •  Rendell is a joke (0+ / 0-)

    He said Obama couldn't beat either Hillary or McCain in PA.  

    Sestak will get the support from Pelosi, Hillary, Casey, and other Democrats.  If Obama keeps acting like Bush he won't have much influence.  Him trying to shove a Republican down Democratic voter's throats can play to Sestak's advantage.  

  •  Specter is very popular in PA-07 (0+ / 0-)

    In 2004, he won there 57%-41% against Montco based Joe Hoeffel.  The really scary thing is that Rick Santorum won the district 59%-40% in his close reelection in 2000.  

  •  well (0+ / 0-)

    i call his campaign office once a week and say "from a neighbor in PA CD 16...RUN JOE RUN" ...they always reply that they are getting many many similar calls...there are some issues I differ with Sestak on but quite honestly the fact that Specter changed parties ONLY because of polling numbers and not because he WANTS to be a democrat really gets to me...and if he in fact wins the primary i will vote for him (and will work against any Republican) but my heart won't be 100% in it

    DC: 1/20/09 or bust! Party to end all parties!

    by Spedwybabs on Sat May 30, 2009 at 09:20:31 PM PDT

  •  Huge Bonus (0+ / 0-)

    It's a huge bonus to have Sestak in the race (despite what the politically incompetent Rendell might say). This is one of the few times when some of the actual Democratic message might cut through the chatter and get to the voters.

    If Specter had simply come out in favor of EFCA and single-payer healthcare, the race would be over. But instead, he went into the conservative cave and came out with a corporatist stalactite.

    We should all send Sestak a check and send Rendell a copy (minus the account number).

  •  I'm ready to donate to Sestak (0+ / 0-)

    I'm just waiting for Sestak to formalize his candidancy....

  •  I love Sestak (0+ / 0-)

    I hope he runs and he wins. I live in CA but i wish i could vote for him!

  •  google "sestak staff" and "sestak mullen" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew

    To find out more about Sestak I googled his name and came up with some startling facts.  Apparently he is a very hard boss--23 of his Congressional staff quit in the first year and a half.  He expected people to work continuously for months with NO days off, often up to 14 hrs. a day (google "sestak staff")  Also he was extremely pushy in the Navy (google "sestak mullen") and one of first things Mike Mullen (now head of Jt. Chiefs of Staff?) did when he became Chairman of Naval Operations in 2005 was to remove Sestak from his post.  Even if he were a progessive, which he is not, this is not the kind of personality I'd want to give support to.

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