Pennsylvania Senator-elect Pat Toomey graces the front page of the New York Times website this afternoon. The story paints the portrait of a man with sincere and consistent conservative views, but also a willingness to be open-minded and work across the aisle. Toomey is politically pragmatic too, as he cannot alienate Democrats and Independents if he hopes to be re-elected in 6 years.
Conservative Seeks Political Balance on His Way to the Senate
By Katharine Q. Seelye
ZIONSVILLE, Pa. — Patrick J. Toomey was elected to the Senate in November as part of the Republican revolution, with a big assist from Tea Party activists, an endorsement from Sarah Palin and the expectation that he would join with other antiestablishment conservatives to remake Washington. But as he prepared to take office this week, Mr. Toomey hardly sounded like a partisan rabble-rouser.
Mr. Toomey’s goals have remained fairly consistent over his time in public life: to cut spending and overhaul the tax code. He also wants to scrap the Democrats’ new health care law. And he intends to continue to push for allowing young people to invest part of their Social Security payroll tax.
But he signaled in the interview, as he did during the campaign, that he would not be an ideological purist.
His neutrality on the tax compromise suggested that he would not be an automatic vote for Mr. DeMint, whose political fund gave Mr. Toomey’s campaign more than $5 million. Neutrality also lets him avoid having to pick sides, for now, between Mr. DeMint and Mr. McConnell.