Sestak to Debate Toomey as Specter substitute

Rep. Joe Sestak was all wound up with no one to debate - Democratic primary opponent Sen. Arlen Specter won't do it (yet) - so he invited Republican candidate Pat Toomey instead.

Toomey accepted. Now they can bash Specter in stereo, albeit from opposite ends of the political spectrum.

"I can certainly understand your frustration...like many politicians who have spent decades in Washington, Sen. Specter maintains a sense of entitlement to his office," Toomey wrote in a letter dated today accepting the invite.

Toomey suggested that the two focus their discussion on the economy and fiscal policies.

Sestak's campaign wants to use the occasion to demonstrate its belief that Toomey=Specter on the economy. "They both believe in the Bush tax cuts, a lawless Wall Street, and a 'flat tax' that raises taxes on 95 percent of American workers to give their money to the richest of the rich," Sestak spokesman Jonathon Dworkin said.

Specter's campaign notes that their candidate and Sestak already debated once, earlier this month in front of the Democratic State Committee in Lancaster, and are scheduled for a May 1 hour-long debate that will be broadcast on at least one TV station in each of Pennsylvania's six media markets, as well as on the PCN cable channel.

Toomey and Sestak have met once before, when they discussed health care in September in Allentown. It was a decourous affair, and they met for drinks afterward.

"This time, you're buying the beer," Toomey wrote.

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