Toomey Blasts Specter, Paints Sestak

Senator Arlen Specter took donors’ money “under false pretenses.”  So says, former U.S. Representative  and now Republican candidate for Senate Patrick Toomey, speaking to me on NBC10 at Issue.   The Federal Election Commission has ruled that the Club for Growth can contact Specter’s donors and let them know that they can seek a return of their campaign donations if they are not happy with Specter having turned Democrat.  I asked Toomey if that’s dirty pool by CFG, which he used to lead.  He says, “If there’s dirty pool going on, I think you ought to look right there (meaning, ,”Specter taking the money as a Republican, but using it as a Democrat.)  Adds Toomey, “He took the money under false pretenses.”  I asked if overall Specter has been good for Pennsylvania.  Toomey says, “Oh, I don’t know. Certainly, lately he has not…Unfortunately, he has become a political opportunist.”  “I think the only principle Arlen Specter has shown he believes in is his own re-election,” says Toomey.

On Democrat Joe Sestak, it’s clear what box Toomey is crafting.  “Joe’s a very liberal guy.  He has a very liberal set of ideas.”  Toomey sees a race between Sestak and him as big government vs. freedom and flexibility.

 As for the health care debate, Pat Toomey sees the passionate town hall meetings as most Americans showing that they think the Democatic House plan is too much, too fast.   He says the “extremely left wing agenda” has touched a nerve with ordinary Americans.  But he adds while it is an opportunity for Republicans, it would be a mistake for Republicans to conclude that opposition to the House/Obama health care plan also means support for Republicans. 

Toomey term-limited himself in Congress.  He pledged not to serve more than 3 terms and true to his promise he did not seek a 4th term.  I asked him if he will limit himself if elected to the Senate.  He says, “I might.  I’m going to give that some thought.”  But he adds, “I think term limits are fundamentally more important in the House than in the Senate”…because House districts are gerrymandered.

On whether the Philadelphia Eagles hiring Michael Vick was a good idea, “You know, I hope so…Michael Vick now has an opportunity to redeem himself.”  That’s something on which Toomey and Sestak agree.

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