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Sestak Running for President

He’s back, and he’s running.

Former two-term Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak, who twice ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senate, announced Sunday he is seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

His announcement video touts his three decades of military service, earning the rank of 3-star Admiral in the Navy, as proof he’s capable of taking on the country’s challenges.

“When accountability for doing what’s needed would again mean going against engrained norms, and again at a cost” Sestak said in the announcement video. “But there is one norm. We are abandoning that is endangering the American dream.”

His website’s campaign slogan reads “Adm Joe: Accountability to America”.

Sestak is in Iowa campaigning today, as first reported by Washington Post reporter Dave Weigel.

During Sestak’s 2010 and 2016 bids for the U.S. Senate, he faced opposition from the establishment of the Democratic Party and mentions this in his written announcement about why he’s seeking the presidency.

“We need a leader who is trusted by the people because he is willing to be accountable to them — above self, above party, above any special interest – no matter the cost to him,” Sestak’s campaign announcement reads. “That is why I originally ran for the U.S. Senate, despite the opposition of our party’s Washington establishment.”

He singled out the late Sen. Arlen Specter who he bested in the 2010 Democratic primary for, “humiliating Anita Hill.” Specter earned the support of the Democratic establishment in his re-election bid following his party switch, reflecting his crucial vote for the 2009 stimulus and 2010 Affordable Care Act – but Sestak beat him by 8 points. He lost to Senator Pat Toomey by 2 points that fall.

Sestak does not name Katie McGinty, who defeated Sestak by 10 points in the 2016 Senate primary, but said the race was a “mandate from the Democratic Senate leadership to ‘stop walking and just fundraise.’”

“The president is not the problem; he is the symptom of the problem people see in a system that is not fair and accountable to the people,” Sestak said in his written announcement.

On the issues front, he lists 12 categories in which he plans to address if elected President. Some of the issues he advocates for are rebuilding the infrastructure of the country, “Restore the Affordable Care Act and advance it with a public option to expand access to health insurance,” rejoining the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Paris Climate Accord, and “curbing corporate power” among other positions in his “Plan for America.”

Sestak becomes the 25th Democrat to announce their intentions for the 2020 presidential nomination. He added that his later entrance into the race was due to his daughter’s recent battle with brain cancer.

He served 31 years in the U.S. Navy, rising to the rank of three star vice admiral prior to running for Congress in Delaware County. He now appears to reside in northern Virginia.

This story was updated to correct a statement made in Sestak’s written announcement. He did not vote for a Republican in 2016, but suggested that he agreed with a Republican from a town hall event during his campaign suggesting that he was right to walk the state and “just fundraise.” 

26 Responses

  1. I would vote for Joe Sestak before I would consider voting Bill DiBlasio, Spartacus Booker, Kristen Gillibrand, Beto O’Rourke and many other of the current crop of announced Democratic Presidential Candidates. I guess I will have to send his campaign a $1.00 contribution to help get him on the stage in the next round of Presidential Debates.

  2. I’m not really sure why Joe Sestak is running, but at least he did serve his country with honor – UNLIKE ole tan in a can and bone spurs that resides in our White House right now. Trump is a coward.

    1. You do realize that Biden got multiple deferments for “asthma” immediately following his football playing days?

      1. You do realize that Biden had asthma but Trump has always been a coward and a sleaze bag? Says he had bone spurs but won’t release the x-rays, says he is a billionaire but won’t release the tax returns – seems like a trend. Care to discuss the latest RAPE accusation that just came out against the fake hair and fake tan COWARD?

  3. OMG!!! How many more will announce? Being smarter or more honest or educated than Trump is not the standard for qualified.

  4. I think Joe Sestak’s announcement is an example of what happens when we do not have adequate mental healthcare for our Vets.

    1. Joe Sestak is morally and intellectually superior to the nominal president. Fact.

    1. LOL.

      I’m sure they wish Joe was still pretending to be a PA resident so they could run against him again.

      But, Joe sold his house ( I don’t call it his “home”) and dropped his PA voter registration.

    2. Not sure what Toomey would be worried about. He is a term limits guys so I’m sure he won’t be running again.

  5. Big Title, huge ego. At least we have an even 24 running for the nomination. Can we get to 3 dozen???

  6. well why not Joe Sestak? The 23 self-proclaimed “D’s” currently running can’t win – at best they will kill off each other–the country is NOT going socialist, black, feminist or gay at least in 2020, age v youth? Who knows, I personally don’t believe the 2020 D nominee has come forward yet, so why not Joe Sestak? I know Adm Sestak, the worst that will happen? he’ll loose….

    1. joseph albert-

      No. The worst that will happen is that he’s elected an launched the nuclear missiles for the glory of it.

  7. Although the details are a bit hyperbolic, I must admit concurrence with the thrust of D2’s posting; this is a first.

    1. Sklaroff-

      Joe is even more of a nutcase than you are. At least, you are honest about where you stand, and people can see how crazy you are. Joe, on the other hand, just parrots Dem talking points, but believes GOP ones.

        1. Granite Barncoat-

          I’ve know him since his “ship” landed in Delco in 2006 for his campaign.

          Behind the scenes, he’s like Jeckyll/Hyde, Dorian Grey and Captain Queeg all rolled into one.

          He’s morally bankrupt. According to one of his staffers, his book is plagiarized from the term papers of his students.

          He has all the loyalty that Trump has to the people who’ve helped him. (He flatters them, steps over them, and once they are not powerful enough to help him, he abandons them and turns away any requests to help them.

  8. “He also implies that he voted for a Republican in a 2016 race”. He probably voted for Toomey.

    I’m pretty sure that if given truth serum, Sestak would divulge that he voted for Nixon, Reagan, both Bushes, and John McCain as well.

    Sestak’s ego exceeds that of Trump’s.

    Sestak retired as a two-star admiral. He was not a 3-star long enough to retain the title in retirement.

    BTW, the Washington Post incorrectly referred to Sestak as a Pennsylvania Democrat. (I sent them a correction)

    IN FACT, he sold his Delaware County property in April 2018, and has since dropped his PA registration. He finally accepting his real home/resident/registration in Alexandria, VA (where he and his wife have lived since they bought their house in 1998).

    If you want a laugh, Google: joe sestak alexandria va

    The top link should be a crank letter to the local newspaper about traffic congestion and bike lanes on some repaving project.

    1. Admiral Sestak did retire as a 3-star admiral. He did not hold the rank long enough to get O-9 pay in retirement. He is entitled to use the rank.

      1. John Harvey-


        “He retired as a two-star admiral, not having held the rank of three-star admiral long enough to retain it in retirement.”

  • Reader Poll: Should President Joe Biden Step Aside?

    • Yes. He should step aside because of his age, declining ability to do the job. (45%)
    • No. He should not step aside. (39%)
    • Yes. He should step aside because he can't beat Donald Trump. (15%)

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