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PoliticsPA: Karl Rove weighs in on PA races at National Constitution Center

By Alex Irwin
PoliticsPA Contributor

GOP strategist Karl Rove predicted Republican victories in a number of hotly contested Pennsylvania Congressional Races during an appearance at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia Monday night.

Speaking at a “mid-term election overview,” Rove said he thought Republicans would pick up eight or nine seats in the house and called the PA Senate race between Republican Pat Toomey and Democrat Joe Sestak an “early indication” of how both parties will fare on election night.

“In Pennsylvania, you’ve got two relatively fresh, new, younger faces, but there’s a classic sort of left and right, conservative and liberal. It’s going to be interesting to see how it plays out,” Rove said.

Rove predicted victory for Republican Jim Gerlach over challenger Manan Trivedi and said Patrick Meehan would defeat Democrat Bryan Lentz for Sestak’s open seat. He also said Mike Fitzpatrick stood a good chance of defeating incumbent Democrat Patrick Murphy, despite recent conflicting polls.

“If you’re an incumbent as Patrick Murphy is in the high 40s, you end up in the high 40s,” Rove said of recent polling results.

He also predicted a win for incumbent Charlie Dent over challenger John Callahan, saying he expects the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to pull money out of that race in the next few weeks.

Rove was less optimistic about GOP wins against Chaka Fattah and Allyson Schwartz in Southeastern PA. But he said if Carson Dee Adcock does squeeze out a victory against Schwartz, it could signify a big night for Republicans.

All told, he said he expected Republicans to gain between 27 and 45 seats in the House, but added that number could go as high as 55, depending on how the next five weeks go.

Rove didn’t comment directly on the gubernatorial race between Republican Tom Corbett and Democrat Dan Onorato, but he did predict that Republicans would gain 7 or 8 governors this November.

Rove touched briefly on the Tea Party movement and the impact it may have on the GOP in the general election, downplaying the more fringe elements and focusing on the groups’ criticism of health care reform and the increasing national debt.

He later fielded questions submitted by audience members on topics ranging from diversity in the Republican Party to term limits and bipartisanship. He also discussed engaging young voters, recalling his earliest political involvement with the College Republicans during the Vietnam War.

Rove was also promoting his most recent book, Courage and Consequence: My Life as a Conservative in the Fight, which he said President George W. Bush first requested that he write during a lunch at the White House. Bush ate a fat-free hot dog, while Rove had a peanut butter and honey sandwich on whole wheat toast.

Monday night’s event was moderated by David Eisner, president and chief executive officer of the National Constitution Center. Former U.S. Ambassador to Luxembourg Peter Terpeluk, Jr. introduced Rove.

One Response

  1. Adcock is still closing in on Schwartz. She is now showing up for appearances with him which she previously refused to do and has started running negative ads on network TV with the infamous grainy gray pictures of Adcock. Her campaign is in panic mode.

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