Pennsylvania: Torsella First Democrat to File Against Specter

Posted February 9, 2009 at 6:08pm

Sen. Arlen Specter (R) has his first official challenger for the 2010 election.

Democrat Joe Torsella, the chairman of the state Board of Education and former president of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, issued a press release Monday announcing that he had filed federal paperwork to run for Senate in Pennsylvania next year.

Torsella lost the 2004 Democratic primary to now-Rep. Allyson Schwartz, who is also considering a Senate bid.

Specter is expected to run for a sixth term in the Keystone State. He won re-election in 2004 over then-Rep. Joe Hoeffel (D) after surviving a primary challenge from then-Rep. Pat Toomey (R).

Democrats view Specter as a top target in 2010. He also faces the prospect of another competitive primary challenge.