Sestak goes after the little guy in Senate race (Updated)
Joe Vodvarka was a late entrant to the Democratic Senate primary, has virtually no campaign cash and little chance of making any kind of a splash in the May nominating contest.
But Joe Sestak still wants him out of the picture.
Sestak on Tuesday filed a court challenge to Vodvarka’s nominating petitions, according to court documents. The challenge was unusual in that it came directly from Sestak himself; candidates typically find supporters to file ballot challenges on their behalf. Sestak could be worried that, in a race expected to tighten significantly, any anti-incumbent vote Vodvarka draws would likely come from Sestak’s column.
A Sestak spokesman did not immediately comment Wednesday morning. But the campaign manager for Sestak’s main opponent, incumbent Senator Arlen Specter, had harsh words for the move.
“Congressman Sestak has spent months saying that his was a new type of campaign, dedicated to changing Washington, D.C. and the Senate,” campaign manager Christopher Nicholas said in a statement. “But challenging Mr. Vodvarka’s petition signatures is a vivid example of old style back-room politics as usual.”
UPDATE–Manly Parks, a lawyer for Sestak, e-mails the following statement: “Pennsylvania has clear rules about what is required to be on the ballot. It is always appropriate to make sure that those rules have been followed and that each candidate has demonstrated they have at least the minimum level of support required by law. This challenge has been brought for the simple reason that Joseph Vodvarka has not submitted the legally-required minimum number of valid signatures required to entitle him to be on the ballot as a candidate in the Democratic Primary for United States Senate.”
March 17, 2010 at 8:32 am