By Keegan Gibson, Managing Editor
When Jane Earll retires at the end of her term, the popular 14-year incumbent Republican will leave behind one of the most competitive state Senate districts in Pennsylvania. Both parties have made recruiting a top-tier candidate a priority.
Several sources confirm that Republicans will tap Janet Anderson, a former staffer in Earll’s office and the Ridge administration who is currently the Executive Director of the Northwest Regional Planning and Development Commission.
She turned in her two weeks notice at the Commission last week.
Ron DiNicola, a prominent attorney who represents business interests of legendary boxer Muhammad Ali, has ruled out a run the Erie Times News reports. He’s also a former congressional candidate (in 1996 against Rep. Phil English) and similarly declined to challenge Rep. Mike Kelly this year.
Expect this race to be the top state Senate campaign in Pa. in 2012 when the Democrats choose a nominee. It’s the party’s best pickup opportunity of the cycle.
The registration favors Democrats 55 to 34 percent; the district went for Obama in 2008 and Casey in 2006; and Dems trend around 60 percent in any given election, all other things being equal.