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Pa. Senate Hopeful Rallies Penn State Voters

Joe Sestak Rally on Old Main Steps

Democratic senatorial candidate, Joe Sestak, held a rally on the steps of Old Main yesterday for a crowd of roughly 100 students and citizens.

Part of a last-minute push to mobilize students and get out the vote on November 2nd, the rally boasted a diversity of speakers, including Navy veteran and small business owner Rob Sears and State College’s own Mayor Goreham.

First to take the stage was Rob Sears. He summed up Sestak with three defining qualities: hard-working, good listener and a straight shooter. Sears, praised Sestak’s 31 years of service with the United States Navy and his legislation on small business. Sears attributed the success of his own business to the four pages of legislation endorsed by Sestak.

Sears ended his speech by calling Sestak’s agenda “pro active government.” He said, “If you think the answer lies in small business, growth and science and technology, Joe Sestak is your guy.”

Mayor of State College, Liz Goreham, was the next to speak. She said she “strongly endorses” Joe Sestak for two reasons. He is a “real human being” and he “really believes in democracy.”

Goreham praised Sestak’s belief in protecting the rights of the people and creating opportunities in the work force. “He possesses all the qualities of a great senator,” she said.

U2’s “Beautiful Day” trumpeted the arrival of the Democratic candidate for Pennsylvania Senate, Joe Sestak. He took the stage wearing a genuine smile and a USS George Washington Battle Group jacket. His mission was clear from the start as his energy rattled as feedback from the PA system, sending his voice echoing off of the College Ave storefronts.

He started his speech by applauding the youth of the country: “Experience doesn’t hold them down.”

He continued to drive home his idea that the American youth are the key to aiding regrowth of our nation. An alarming percentage of Philadelphia’s youths fail to complete school, which he sees as something that needs to be fixed in order to get America back as a great world power.

China’s quickly growing economy was a big issue Sestak addressed, asking the crowd, “Where are your job opportunities?”

His fear of China’s growth was illustrated in a comparison between funding for high-speed rails at home and abroad. 11,000 miles of rail and $88 billion was spent in China to revamp their railway transportation while America built nothing and allocated a mere $8 billion for future upgrades. He then slandered Republican candidate, Pat Toomey, for his endorsement of a law that aids outsourcing, which Sestak sees as a detriment during a “savage time in our economy.”

“It’s about creating jobs here,” he shouted. He continued to expose Toomey’s track record of close relations to big Wall Street businesses, his legislation that hurts American workforce and his tax exemptions that benefit foreign corporations. Sestak’s record of legislation is geared more toward the middle class worker which he feels is the heart beat of Pennsylvania.

“I’m asking for your time,” he said during his closing comments. “This position is not for me, I just want to serve you.”

Sestak’s personality was visible in his campaign efforts. When he ended his speech and descended into the crowd, his genuine concern could be read in his firm handshakes and encouraging words. With his arms around three young children, he thanked them for coming out and in a supportive tone said, “grow up and be somebody.” He continued to make his way around the crowd, shaking hands and sharing stories with Navy veterans.

His smile spread to the faces of his supporters. One elderly man told Sestak reassuringly, “you’re going to win.” Without hesitation, he responded, “We’re going to win, sir.”

Sestak campaign intern, Laura Shadel, further iterated the personality put into Sestak’s rallies. She compared the campaign to the “down to earth” Obama campaign, which focused on passionately engaging voters on an individualized level. This style of “grassroots campaigning” is a way for politicians to step off of their pedestals and become connected with the people they serve. Shadel added a little adage that is popular among the democrats adopting this personal style of publicity. She said, “Republicans fall in line, but Democrats fall in love.”

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