"PoliticsPA has transformed the
political conversation in PA."
-State Rep. Jeff Coleman
"PoliticsPA does a fantastic job
keeping the citizens of our great Commonwealth informed with factual information
on all of the latest political news. I commend PoliticsPA for their
resourcefulness and ingenuity."
- Lt. Governor Catherine Baker
"PoliticsPA is a great resource and injects some much needed
fun and insight into the political discussion here in Pennsylvania."
- Governor Ed Rendell
"It is clear that you are fast becoming
the most widely read and trusted source of information in this town."
- House Speaker John Perzel
"I think it's (PoliticsPA)
- Arlen Specter, United States
"It's the most
widely consulted Web site in the state for politics.''
- Dr. Terry Madonna, political
"You have invited people to the party of Pennsylvania politics all year
long. Some have gotten what they wished for in your rankings. Others just
had their candles blown out. Some have had their profile balloons rise;
others just burst from too much self-inflation. But you can be sure of one
thing - there will be plenty of mischief and mayhem, misdeed and misquote,
to keep you busy unwrapping the surprise packages of politics
Pennsylvania-style for another twelve months."
- President Pro Tempore Robert Jubelirer
"Nineveh, the ancient Assyrian capital of antiquity had many splendors, but
they didn't have PoliticsPA! Your munificent accolades of my intellect and
my platoon are surpassed only by your capacity to keep us on our proverbial
toes. Happy anniversary PoliticsPA!"
- House Democratic Leader Bill DeWeese
"Congratulations to PoliticsPA on one year of providing us
complete coverage on Pennsylvania Politics. When the others won't or can't
get the story, PoliticsPA always does. "
- Attorney General Mike Fisher
"Washington has 'The
Hotline,' and Pennsylvania has PoliticsPA. You guys are an excellent source
for political analysis and late breaking news. You provide just the right
mix of insightful commentary, and of course that necessary dose of humor."
"Whenever I am in session in
Washington D.C., I always keep up to date on Pennsylvania politics using
-Congressman Tim Holden
"Thanks for providing a one-stop click for political junkies like me."
- TJ Rooney, Chair,
Democratic State Committee
"When it comes to affairs of the state, PoliticsPA is the
best place for tips and leads about everything that's happening in
Pennsylvania. The Web site keeps a close tab on state politics and makes
everyone an insider---and that makes those of us on the inside a bit
nervous! The cloak-and-dagger approach of PoliticsPA offers a legitimate
source of news and information that keeps the Capitol buzzing and keyboards
clicking around the state."
- Mike Veon, House Democratic Whip
"You have brightened the Pennsylvania political scene,
improved the body politic and gave us all a few more laughs. Many More."
- Senator Allen Kukovich
" ... an enormously popular and anonymous
Web site devoted to state politics."
Amy Werden, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Who would have thought it possible? A website run by a completely anonymous
organization, mostly fueled by tips, hints and wispy strands of information,
becomes the must read every morning for the political movers and shakers of
Pennsylvania. You've gotta love this business! Keep up the good work."
- David Millner, political
"PoliticsPA.com, the 'New York Times' of Pennsylvania political
- Ed Mitchell, political consultant
"PoliticsPA gives us a thorough coverage and great inside baseball on
- Dan Ronayne, RNC Northeast Regional Press
"PoliticsPA is like the morning cup of coffee we political junkies
depend on before starting each day."
-Ken Snyder, Democratic party
Between 1976 and 1998, Senator Arlen Specter has faced primary after
primary. Some of his opponents have been worthy... others, less so. We
looked at Specter's Senatorial and Gubernatorial runs, starting in 1976, and
ranked his primary opponents.
(1978): As the only western Pennsylvania candidate
in the race,
Thornburgh handily defeated Arlen Specter in the 1978 contest for governor
to replace the retiring Milton Shapp, garnering
323,349 votes, (32%)
to Specter's 206,802, (20%). Thornburgh, the former U.S. Attorney, went on to win the general
election, spending what was than considered an extravagant amount of about $4
million, defeating Pittsburgh Mayor, Democrat Pete Flaherty.
John Heinz (1976):
With the open seat of the retiring Senator Hugh Scott, Specter, then the
former Philadelphia District Attorney, faced the popular western Pennsylvania
Congressman John Heinz in the 1976 Senatorial primary. Heinz won by three points,
with 358,715 votes to Specter's 332,513. Although bitter primary
opponents, Specter and Heinz grew close once Specter was elected to the Senate in
1980. Regardless, Heinz was one of the toughest primary opponents Specter has ever
Robert Butera (1978): The
former Southeastern state Representative and House Republican Floor Leader finished
just two points behind Arlen Specter, capturing 190,653 votes in the 1978 GOP gubernatorial primary.
David Marston (1978):
Marston stock rose after President Jimmy Carter fired this U.S. Attorney with
the change of administration, however, he only garnered 161,813 (16%) in the 1978 GOP
A year later, Marston won the GOP nomination but lost the race for Mayor of
Haabestad came within 37,000 votes of winning the open-seat primary for Richard
Schweiker's Senate seat in 1980. Haabestad was the GOP's endorsed candidate
former GOP State Chairman. It was one of the few times the Pennsylvania GOP lost a battle with their
(1992): Faced with a difficult re-election to his state House seat, the
ardently pro-life Delaware County state Representative drew 35% against Specter, in
what turned out to be a nasty, personal campaign. During a primary
debate with Specter, Freind notoriously drew attention to his own Christianity - in
a none-too-subtle effort to compare himself to Specter. Even some
pro-lifers had a hard time sticking to Freind after that. But Freind's
real trouble was that he was unable to raise enough money to seriously compete
with Specter. Later in that year
(dubbed the political "year of the woman"),
won with only 49% against Lynn Yeakel.
Richard Stokes (1986): The
conservative Carlisle schoolteacher won a quarter of the vote in the 1986
Senatorial primary, despite complete anonymity and no campaign. The Stokes showing
convinced Specter opponents that any candidate would start with 25% of
George Packard (1976): The
local newspaper editor won 160,379 votes (19%) in the 1976 GOP primary, finishing behind Heinz
(1998): The conservative Bucks county gadfly garnered 15% in the 1998 GOP
Senate primary. Lingenfelter's career high point: winning 40% against
incumbent Congressman Jim Greenwood in 1996. To his credit, Lingenfelter hustled,
but could not put together an organization or fundraising machine.
Ed Howard (1980): The
pro-choice Bucks County State Senator won 13% in the 1980 Senatorial primary and later
became Specter's trusted friend and advisor.
(1998): The only African American to challenge Specter in a GOP
primary, Murphy garnered 18% against Specter, and spent less than $3000. A drug researcher from
Chester County, Murphy said he decided to run against Specter because he felt
the Senator was too liberal for the party on such issues as affirmative action
and abortion. Murphy used his one chance at media coverage to against homosexuals and the United Nations, helping propel him into
political obscurity. Murphy was one of Specter's more articulate
opponents, but not much else.
Henry Hager (1978):
Despite serving as Republican Leader of the State Senate,
Hager won only 6% in the 1978 GOP primary (34,396 votes)
qualifying as one of Arlen Specter's least credible primary campaign opponents.
(1978): Watson, a Harrisburg farmer and businessman, finished the 1978 primary
with 5% of the GOP vote, or 33,265 votes.
(1978): Jacobson, an insurance executive, finished the 1978 primary
with just 1% of the GOP vote, or 7,374 votes.
Gubernatorial Primary had a crowded field, and included the following candidates
who came in at the bottom:
Lewis Richards, machinist and machine shop owner from Pittston, Luzerne
Francis Worley, The perennial candidate served in the State House in the
1940's into the 1960's. In 1997, Worley ran for governor in the Republican
Primary against Governor Tom Ridge. Attending his announcement speech:
his campaign treasurer, his treasurer's wife, his housekeeper and two reporters
covering the event.
Warren Williams, research engineer and chemist from Susquehanna County
Norman Bertasavage, insurance salesman from Schuylkill County.
Bertasavage later went on to run for President of the United States in 1992,
garnering 23 votes the New Hampshire Primary. (George H. W. Bush won that
Primary, with more than 92,000 votes.)