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Pennsylvania: Some Unions Favoring Kanjorski Challenger

Rep. Paul Kanjorski’s challenger in the Democratic primary, Lackawanna County Commissioner Corey O’Brien, has received backing from two small labor organizations.

The Northeast Pennsylvania and Scranton building and construction trades councils announced they are backing O’Brien in the May 18 primary.

The two councils have about 10,000 members, according to a press release from the campaign, and represent 15 local building trades unions.

However, the Allentown Morning Call reports that Kanjorski has the endorsements of the lion’s share of organized labor in the 11th district.

The winner of the Democratic primary will face Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta (R) in November.

Senate Poll: Specter Now Ahead of Toomey

After months of either trailing or tying in public opinion polls, Sen. Arlen Specter (D) has jumped ahead of former Rep. Pat Toomey (R) in the latest Quinnipiac University survey.

Specter led 49 percent to 42 percent in a poll conducted Feb. 22-28.

Specter also held a significant lead — 52 percent to 29 percent — over his challenger in the primary, Rep. Joe Sestak.

Quinnipiac University Polling Institute Assistant Director Peter Brown chalked up much of Specter’s lead to gender differences.

“Specter’s lead over Toomey is built upon a 52-36 percent margin among women voters, while Toomey has a small 49-46 percent lead among men, an indication that the gender gap remains alive and well,” Brown said in a statement.

Quinnipiac surveyed 1,452 Keystone State voters. The poll has a margin of error of 2.6 points.

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