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BREAKING: Pawlowski Suspends Campaign

pawlowskiEvents are moving fast in Allentown.

According to Laura Olsen, Emily Opilo, and Matt Assad of the Morning Call, Ed Pawlowski is suspending his campaign for the U.S. Senate.

He said this move is an effort to focus on the FBI investigation of “contracting practices both prior to his being elected and since.”

“My desire to help change Washington is taking a back seat to doing the job I was elected to do,” Pawlowski said in a statement. “We will reevaluate the race for United States Senate once we have a more clear picture of any potential concerns with Allentown’s government. Until then I will solely focus on doing my job as mayor and will not entertain political campaign questions.”

Pawlowski announced his run for the Democratic nomination last April. He would’ve competed against former Congressman Joe Sestak in the primary to take on Republican incumbent Senator Pat Toomey next year.

While his campaign is technically being “suspended” rather than ended, this is usually a matter of semantics. Campaigns rarely become unsuspended.

On Thursday, the FBI raided the offices of the Mayor and his chief political consultant Mike Fleck.

It has since been revealed that Fleck’s consulting group has folded.

At this point, it’s unclear to what degree Pawlowski himself is in jeopardy.

This news also has national political ramifications. National Democrats have never been pleased with Sestak and Pawlowski was their only alternative. Democrats have a favorable map in 2016 and hope to take back the Senate majority (they’ll need four seats if they win the presidency, five if they don’t). Victory in a blue state like Pennsylvania could prove essential.

Therefore, this news could force D.C. to finally fall behind Sestak or another candidate could make the leap and potentially shift the dynamic of the race.

UPDATE: Jonathan Tamari and Jeremy Roebuck of the Inquirer are reporting that Gov. Wolf’s Chief of Staff Katie McGinty has had conversations about a possible candidacy. The former DEP Secretary and 2014 gubernatorial candidate would likely have to step down soon, though, while the budget crisis has yet to be solved. Additionally, a Draft McGinty movement has sprung up online over the last few weeks.

13 Responses

  1. eagleswing-

    I was referring to the effect of the FBI happening to benefit Sestak, rather than the intent. Sestak just got lucky that his opponents were targets. The FBI couldn’t give a rat’s @ss about Sestak.

    However, regarding the FBI in general, according to my reading of the news reports, they’ve abused the Patriot Act and many of these “terrorists” they keep catching in stings are fools entrapped by FBI informants, and weren’t any real threat at all.

    While many are doing serious anti-crime work, there are others that appear to have carved out a niche inventing criminals to catch to justify their existence, departments, budgets, and promotions.

  2. If I was going to nail somebody to the cross for implying an FBI conspiracy, I would first check the other 10 comments to be sure that said person didn’t follow up and expressly deny such a conspiracy.

    But that’s just me.

  3. David, I find your post iinteresting. Having worked with the FBI as a prosecutor, I did not find any instance where the FBI was ‘bailing out..’ any particular candidate by ‘raiding a political rival.’ FBI raids (a/k/a search warrant seizures) go through several levels of approval at the local US Attorney’s offices or the DOJ Public Integrity section in DC. if you have such evidence regarding any conduct, why not state it here so we can all be informed? Or is s your theory that Obama’s Justice Department has authorized the FBI to launch an investigation against Pawloski to assist Sestak– whom the Dems did not support the 1st time against Toomey?

  4. “seeking some concessions from him”

    Maybe asking him not to trample over small children? That would be a start.

  5. Politico is reporting this morning that the top Democratic Leadership has been meeting with Sestak recently seeking some concessions from him in return for them throwing their support behind him.
    It appears they realize they can’t derail his candidacy nor find anyone who is likely to beat him in the Primary, and they really want to recapture that seat. I just hope Sestak stops short of becoming their sock puppet. He is holding all the cards and does not need to bow down before the Leadership. If they want to have any chance of winning the seat they need Sestak, and hopefully he knows it.
    They hate him so much that the mere fact that they are considering supporting him suggests that they know they have to if they want to have a chance to beat Toomey.

  6. The McGinty Chief of Staff thing doesn’t seem to be working out all that well, may be time to move on.

  7. Would the Dems really put up McGinty as a candidate? She did terribly in the Governor’s race. Even though she somehow managed to wrest from Wolf the power of Governor, does anyone think she could win a Senate race?

  8. “Additionally, a Draft McGinty movement has sprung up online over the last few weeks.”

    Yeah, mostly double and triple posts here on PoliticsPA.

  9. jmarshak-

    I was referring to his luck, rather than implying a conspiracy.

  10. Oh come on DD, the FBI is not in kahootz with Joe Sestak. This is just another city where Democrats have run things forever that’s overflowing with corruption.

  11. “doing the job I was elected to do”

    The reports/rumors imply that he wasn’t doing his job.

    “potential concerns with Allentown’s government” sounds more like potential concerns with serious jail time.

    This is the second time the FBI had bailed out Sestak with a raid on a political rival.

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