The Campaign Spot

Why Did Joe Sestak Lose Momentum?

It looks like Democrat Joe Sestak will end the career of Sen. Arlen Specter. If this comes to pass, it’s probably a tougher race for Republican Pat Toomey. But there’s something intriguing about how this primary fight developed. Sestak kept his powder dry, then went up on the airwaves…

As you can see, once the Sestak offensive begain, the margin closed pretty quickly. Specter had healthy double-digit margins in March, and then by early May it was within the margin of error. The challenger caught up, and then… the momentum stopped. We’ll see how Sestak does tonight; right now, he seems on pace for a narrow win. But he managed to have just enough to catch up, and then, for some reason, he couldn’t pull away. The Rendell machine? Appreciation for seniority? Last-minute doubts about Sestak?

UPDATE: At about 10:15 Eastern, the AP calls the race for Sestak.

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