Fetterman Wins Pennsylvania Senate Race Against Mehmet Oz
After weeks of intense debate, Pennsylvania’s special election to replace Senator Arlen Specter is officially decided. Republican Rick Saccone defeated Democrat Joe Sestak by less than 1.5 percentage points.
The final margin is a surprise, as Specter narrowly prevailed with 54 percent of the vote compared to Sestak’s 45 percent. After six weeks of increasingly heated campaigning, the race was close until the final hours. Saccone told supporters in his victory speech that he was “honored, humbled and grateful” for Sestak’s campaign.
“This victory is not a surprise, but a joyous occasion that is entirely due to the generosity of our friends and supporters,” he said.
“This is for them,” Saccone concluded, thanking them for helping him win this seat and giving him “all the energy and effort that he needed to be a great representative for Pennsylvanians.”
The Pennsylvania Senate race was the first in which Democrats were the majority party. It was a long and sometimes bitter campaign with Sestak frequently appearing to turn Pennsylvania blue. He was able to do this, however, by courting the same old Republican establishment, who helped elect him to the House of Representatives.
Democratic voters in Pennsylvania’s 14th Congressional District, which covers western Pennsylvania, voted against incumbents George Nethercutt, Jr. and Mike Fitzpatrick over the course of the campaign. Fitzpatrick was able to defeat Nethercutt by defeating Sestak in their November election.
While Pennsylvania is one of six states without statewide party primaries, this district is one of the most heavily Republican. Sestak benefited from the unpopularity of Saccone. Pennsylvania is the reddest state in the nation, while Pennsylvania’s 15th Congressional District voted for Bush I in the 2004 and 2008 presidential election, and Obama in the 2012 election.
In this race, the stakes were