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Barack? Nah, Sestak would rather have Michelle on the trail

Barack? Nah, Sestak would rather have Michelle on the trail

It remains to be seen how hard the White House will push for Democratic Senate nominee Joe Sestak, the congressman who ran against his party. But if the White House does send someone to campaign in Pennsylvania, Sestak says he’d rather have the First Lady than the president.

“[Barack Obama] has offered to come and I went down to the White House and said absolutely, but I said, what I really want, my number one choice … I said Michelle Obama,” Sestak told reporters Monday at the Pennsylvania Press Club in Harrisburg.

Michelle Obama remains considerably more popular than her husband in Pennsylvania—and throughout the country. Sestak, in remarks reported by news organizations including The Morning Call, says he also expects Gov. Ed Rendell to campaign for him as he looks to beat Republican Pat Toomey in the fall. Rendell worked hard for Senator Arlen Specter, who Sestak defeated in the May Democratic primary.

“Look, Gov. Rendell has offered to help out and he knows Pennsylvania,” Sestak said. “Look, I work with everybody.”

July 26, 2010 at 2:45 pm Staff

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comments [15] | post a comment

  1. Jon Geeting

    Jul 26th, 2010

    A quibble: I wouldn’t say Sestak “ran against his party” in the primary. After all, Sestak’s core argument was that Arlen Specter was an unacceptable Democratic nominee for having recently been a Republican. I think you would say he ran against his party if he was opposing their governing agenda. In fact, Sestak positioned himself as more loyally devoted to that agenda than Specter.

  2. See his point.

    Jul 26th, 2010

    Sestak may be on to something. Anyone who saw the First Lady in person on the stump in 08 were pleasantly surprised to witness a darned good rally speech.

  3. 1994 Again

    Jul 26th, 2010

    Translation: “Obama’s poll numbers in PA have tanked so I hope the guy stays in DC.”

  4. David Diano

    Jul 26th, 2010

    Maybe Michelle is the only one that Sestak didn’t claim offered him a job.

  5. 1994 Again

    Jul 26th, 2010

    David – Good one!

  6. Benjamin Barnett

    Jul 26th, 2010

    To this point, it appears that Rep. Sestak ran against his party because he was furious about the institutional opposition that he faced by his party. Nobody, except the voters, in PA supported his “insurgency” campaign.
    I can’t say for certain, but I think he would have accepted support if they (Party) had offered early on.

  7. Rob

    Jul 26th, 2010

    Totally inaccurate to describe Sestak as having run “against the party.” He ran against a bankrupt leadership that attempted to annoint an unsavory character like Specter because of their own, individual power agendas. The party leadership, like the hapless Specter, thought it was all about them. Sestak ran for the party, not against it.

  8. David Diano

    Jul 27th, 2010

    Sestak ran to satisfy his enormous ego and sense of entitlement. Joe’s repeated made it clear he doesn’t care about Party.

    The party’s choice was based upon having an experienced, and well funded candidate (Specter), who had beaten Toomey and appealed to Independents time and again.

    So, instead of what would be Specter’s $10 million warchest, we’ve got low Joe with only $2 million. Do people really think that Sestak is so much better a candidate that he’s worth the risk of having $8 million less to work with?

  9. BerksWoman

    Jul 27th, 2010

    Now that the primary is over, lets see how loyal a Democrat Arlen Specter has become. He needs to open up that $10 million warchest. He himself said he would do whatever it takes to keep an extreme-rightwing ideologue like Toomey out of the senate.

  10. Rob

    Jul 27th, 2010

    David, the answer to your question is absolutely. Character is everything. I don’t know what Sestak did to inspire your intense hatred of him that seems to have blinded you to reality and clouded your judgment, but the truth is that Specter is not a principled person who stands for anything but self-interest. While Specter was serving his own interests in the Senate, Sestak was devoting himself to a career in the Navy. If you gave me a choice of whom I would trust on any issue, it is Sestak by miles.

  11. David Diano

    Jul 27th, 2010

    $10 million is what Specter would have had at this point. Specter had to spend every dime of his Primary money fighting Sestak (not Toomey). Specter had over $3 million unspent (and unspendable) in his General fund that he has to return. Wasted opportunities.

  12. al

    Jul 27th, 2010

    it seems that Specter has only about $2 million left – and rumor is that he gave out huge bonuses and salary payments to the loyal campaign people.

    No way did anyone who knows Specter – believe that he would share his $$$.

  13. David Diano

    Jul 27th, 2010

    Specter CAN’T share the general election $$$. He has to return and give up the money. He has no choice in the matter.

    Any money to his campaign staff would seem huge compared to the miserly ways of Sestak.

  14. bill healy

    Jul 29th, 2010

    Damm we missed our opportunity to send a republican like Spector back to the Senate, Dave your a joke, go join the repubs, you belong with them.

  15. Colonel

    Jul 30th, 2010


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