June 30th, 2009
12:01 PM ET
14 years ago

Former opponent endorses Specter

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/05/06/liberal.republicans/art.specter.gi.jpg
caption="Sen. Arlen Specter has received the endorsement of a former opponent."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Joe Torsella, a former candidate for Senate in Pennsylvania, endorsed one-time Sen. Arlen Specter Tuesday for the Democratic nomination.

Torsella, who dropped out of the race in May, said he ended his candidacy because he didn't want to "weaken" the Democratic Party's chances of winning the seat in 2010. Torsella also said he is "proud" of his party for welcoming Specter and for showing that they are "respectful of independent thinkers."

"The bottom line is that Arlen Specter is smart, independent and gets the job done," Torsella said in a statement. "He is one of the great assets of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. I unreservedly endorse Arlen Specter. He deserves to keep his job and Pennsylvanians need to keep him working for all of us."

Rep. Joe Sestak said he "intends" to challenge Specter for the Democratic nomination.

Filed under: Arlen Specter
soundoff (43 Responses)
  1. Darth Vadik, CA

    It is not that Specter went to the left, it is that the Republicans lost their minds and went soo far right that they alienated a lot of center right people. Now they are stuck with the 26% crowd of that include crazies, extremists, racists, ideologs, and the rest of the bottom of the barrel who obey the word of Rush on command.

    By the way, do you know why Rush has so many listeners, besides being on 600 stations?

    2 out of 3 listeners don't like him, they just want to hear what crazy thing he will say next time (but ratings are ratings).

    June 30, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  2. Jeff, Sarasota FL

    I look at it this way... You have Spector who changed to Independent/Democrat and you have a very small amount of people admitting to be a Republican today.

    But when a lot of those people get ready to vote, a lot will probably still vote republican unless they have an opportunity to vote for an Independent/Democrat that they may have voted for in the past to boot...

    So, given the possibility of converting Republicans it makes perfect sense for them to want him to have the nomination... also throw in the fact that he has stood against Obama since he changed and it will add to his appeal in the long run as it shows him to be that much more independent thinking giving up one but going against the other...

    Seems like a perfect plan with what they have to work with to keep one more seat for the Democrats...

    June 30, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  3. Peter

    I like Specter....But this change was purely political....Is he trying to help his people or just simply wants power?

    June 30, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  4. Rob

    Torsella couldn't weaken it any more than Spector is right now, or for that matter any Democrat, anywhere is weakening that party. They are well on their way to being voted out in 2010, then REAL change can begin.

    June 30, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  5. Fair is Fair

    Poor Arlen... from the looks of him, he's in desperate need of a large dose of Metamucil.

    June 30, 2009 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  6. mother and sister of a soldier

    Please Arlan, as a Pa resident, it is time to retire!

    June 30, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  7. Ron In California

    Spector for dog catcher.

    June 30, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  8. gary davis Harbor Oregon

    sounds good . so maybe Joe should run for some other office and would probably get voted in because he is being smart .


    June 30, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  9. lynn in NM

    Let's face it. The Dems don't "welcome independent thinkers." They wanted the vote. After all, they stripped Specter of his committee status. Great welcome there. Specter deserves to be hung out to dry. How much did they pay Torsella, or what did they promise him? Oh wait, this is politics. That would never happen!

    June 30, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. travis

    well i feel that he is too old too do any good anymore its time for a fresh face like the gov needs anymore old people with old values the younger people need too help run things he switched parties too make sure he was still in there anyone would but that just shows me and lots of other people that if we was captain of a sinking ship he would be the frist off the boat time for him too let someone else lead a voice not him

    June 30, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  11. william gair

    Spector is very valuable to the American people. He has flirted with leaving the GOP for years. Finaly he did. There is no room in the GOP for free thinkers. Thank God there is in the Democratic party. We would be still stumbling arround in the dark if there wasn't.

    June 30, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  12. European-American (formerly No Incumbents 2010, until some bleeding heart lib stole it)

    Sphincter is through. He jumped the good ship "Republican" for the swift boat "Liberal" and now he will sink like the rest of the scurrying rats.

    June 30, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  13. Johnny DC

    For a good laugh, look up Torsella's comments about Specter from their previous campaign battles. Looks shockingly familiar, reminds me of Clinton vs Obama. And Biden vs Obama.

    Dems will say whatever they can to motivate (read: "tricking") the sheep into electing them. Now Torsella is "proud". Up until this year, he would have said much different things.

    June 30, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  14. Dennis

    Tom Ridge will replace Spector in the Senate.

    June 30, 2009 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  15. vegage

    I think this is a big mistake of Democrats, with Specter in the ballot in 2010 Democrats are ging to loose this seat. I would prefer to see a new face running for the seat. When are we going to have term limits enacted for senators and representatives?

    June 30, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  16. New Era

    Specter, you'd better do right by your wife.

    June 30, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  17. Rocky

    Benedict Arnold Specter er Arlen Specter better kiss his Senate seat goodbye. He's been there waaaaaaaay too long. It's not about his personal beliefs now, it's about him wanting to stay in office and hold onto power as long as possible. Specter is a Spectre now, a shadow of his former Republican self. He has no core values, he believes in sefving himself only. Even Joe Lieberman at least called himself an Independent when he left the Democratic Party.

    June 30, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
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