Toomey’s In

by Brien Jackson

The Hill is reporting that, yes, Pat Toomey is going to challenge Arlen Specter in the Republican primary. This is bad news for Republicans in the Senate. Pennsylvania has gotten much bluer since 2004, and even since 2006 when right-wing Senator Rick Santorum got smashed in a bid for re-election, and this is a double edged sword; it makes it more likely that Specter would be defeated in a general election anyway, but it also makes it more likely that he’ll be beaten by Toomey in the primary this time around, because the holdover left in the Pennsylvania GOP is the true believer remnant. In other words, the median vote in the GOP primary is likely to be very much to the right of the median voter in the general election, a fact that will make it hard for the GOP to compete statewide for a while.

Of course, the best way around this is for Specter to change parties.

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