WASHINGTON (CNN) – After much speculation, former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge announced Thursday that he would not run for the Senate in 2010.
Ridge, a centrist Republican, had been courted by some elders in his party to seek the GOP nomination after Sen. Arlen Specter switched his party affiliation from Republican to Democrat.
"I am enormously grateful for the confidence my party expressed in me, the encouragement and kindness of my fellow citizens in Pennsylvania and the valuable counsel I received from so many of my party colleagues," Ridge said in a statement. "The 2010 race has significant implications for my party, and that required thoughtful reflection. All of the above made my decision a difficult and deeply personal conclusion to reach."
Ridge said he will continue to stay involved in politics and added that he will help the GOP "craft solutions that both sides of the aisle can embrace."
"To those who believe that the Republican Party is facing challenges, they are right," Ridge said. "To those who believe the Democratic Party is without its own difficulties, they are wrong. No one party has a monopoly on all of the answers. The more important view, in my mind, is that we remember, whether Republican or Democrat, we are foremost Americans. And as Americans, we have always overcome challenges when we put partisanship aside and solutions first."
True, Bush made it bad for everybody. I'm not a Republican, but the damage he has done will take a long time to repair. Palin just prolonged it a little bit longer....
So... the Republicans want another moderate Republican to replace Specter? For what? So they can alienate and drive him away, too?
Sounds like a conscious and well-thought out decision. The GOP could use some more of that.
I actually have a lot of respect for Tom Ridge and I'm a Dem. He's a moderate so he'll probably run later when it's okay to not vote lockstep with the GOP.
Looks like PA will get Specter again, unless the Dems pull their heads out and run Sestak.
If Tom Ridge ran he would destroy whatever democrat opponent he faced. This is great news moving forward for Democrats!
Ridge isn't running bcause he can't win the Republican primary anymore than Specter could. Most registered Republicans in Pennsylvania are either religious zealots, wingnuts with guns, or both..
He is a good guy, it is sad the Republican party are losing some key centrists.
Joe Sestak will wipe the floor with Specter. Run Joe RUN.
Pity. He would have made a good one.
Yes go Sestak for the senate is waiting for you.
Sestak has the name Bush attached to him.
Tom Ridge is a quality politician and human being. He's bipartisan and even as someone who disagreed strongly with the Bush administration, I would support Ridge in a run for the Senate. If only he cared more about personal ambition than the people of PA...but I think there's already one senator who fits that bill...