Pat Toomey, Pa. Senator-elect

    Republican Pat Toomey squeaked out a victory Tuesday defeating Democrat Joe Sestak for Pennsylvania’s open US Senate seat.

    Sestak, a former Navy admiral had defeated incumbent Arlen Specter in the primary last May. But despite a push by the national Democratic party, he did not get the votes he needed.


    President Obama, the First Lady, Bill Clinton and Joe Biden all came to Pennsylvania to stump for Sestak but it wasn’t enough to push him over the top.

    Joe Sestak stood at the podium with his wife and daughter Tuesday night at The Radnor Hotel and thanked his 19,000 volunteers. Sestak was a tireless campaigner, rising in the early hours to greet commuters.

    Sestak chose not to run again for Congress, but to try for the Senate seat. He painted his opponent Pat Toomey as a right-wing extremist. And despite about 1 million more registered Democrats in the state, not enough of them came out to vote for Sestak.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.