The admiral has set his course.
Former Delaware County U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak has decided not to run for governor of Pennsylvania next year, and seems to have his eyes set on a 2016 re-match with U.S. Senator Pat Toomey.
Sestak told the Associated Press he’s ruled out a gubernatorial campaign, and is instead announcing a campaign for “leadership for a better America,” which, as you can see in the video above, focuses on the U.S. Senate.
Sestak made waves earlier this year with a fundraising blitz that brought in $460,000 for an as-then un-identified purpose. He wasn’t ruling out running for governor next year, and the growing field of Democratic candidates were eyeing him warily.
Muhlenberg College political scientist Christopher Borick said Sestak’s money and name recognition would have made him a big dog in the governor’s race, and his move changes the dynamics of the Democratic field.
“If the field is a bit more open today without Joe Sestak, it does open the door for other high profile candidates, someone like Rob McCord,” Borick said.
McCord is widely viewed as a likely candidate, but hasn’t entered the race. U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, York businessman Tom Wolf, and former state environmental officials John Hangar and Kathleen McGinty all have pledged to run for the chance to take on Republican incumbent Tom Corbett.
Sestak, a former Navy admiral, beat U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter in the 2010 Democratic primary, but lost to Toomey in the general election.