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December 11, 2019, 04:54:45 pm
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  Past Election What-ifs (US) (Moderators: Kutasoff Hedzoff, Apocrypha)
  2010 PA Senate: Specter (D) vs. Toomey (R)
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Author Topic: 2010 PA Senate: Specter (D) vs. Toomey (R)  (Read 407 times)
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Gorguf
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« on: July 14, 2019, 10:59:18 am »

Let's say that Specter switches to the Democratic Party as he did in OTL, but instead of losing, Specter defeats Joe Sestak in the Democratic primary, pitting him against Pat Toomey in the general.

Who wins?
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brucejoel99
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« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2019, 02:57:43 pm »
« Edited: July 14, 2019, 05:23:20 pm by brucejoel99 »

Even if he won the primary (he'd have had to have picked up 60,000 votes to overcome Sestak), then he could very well still go on to lose the general by even more than Sestak did, considering there were a lot of headwinds against the Democrats in 2010.

If he pulls off the win in the general, & assuming he still passes away from his Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, then the governor at the time who'd appoint his replacement was Tom Corbett. There'd have been a pretty sizable bench of Pennsylvania Republicans to draw upon, including conservatives & moderates like Mike Fitzpatrick. The resulting special election (which would be held in Nov. 2013) would probably favor the Republican without the presidential level turnout of Democratic voters, though it's possible that the Republican could be somebody like Tim Murphy, in which case the Democrats could still reclaim the seat (meaning they'd likely hold it come 2016). If the seat is held by the Republicans, then Sestak might be the 2016 nominee (not having been seen as a past loser) & could capture it.

With regards to current politics, you'd potentially add a +1 to the Democrats' Senate numbers from Jan. 2011-Oct. 2012 as well as from Nov. 2013 to the present day (& consider any tied votes (as well as any 51-49 votes before Jan. 2017) changeable), & could look toward the Pennsylvania senator as having a possible place on a future ticket.

EDIT: reclaim, not "creclaim"
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connally68
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« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2019, 09:49:59 pm »

Specter wins by a slim margin.
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TML
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« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2019, 08:44:42 am »

There was an exit poll question about this subject in the Sestak vs. Toomey election. The results of that question indicated that in a hypothetical Specter vs. Toomey matchup, the two-party vote share would still have been 51R-49D, just like the actual result for Sestak vs. Toomey.
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538Electoral
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« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2019, 10:50:31 pm »

Toomey by less than 1%.
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