The US Senate Race in Pennsylvania is under way and three top names seem to be in the mix.

On the GOP side it looks like the heavy hitters will be the guerilla campaign of John Vernon versus what may be a wall funded traditional campaign by Sam Rohrer. Both men have Tea Party street cred with Vernon coming in as a social conservative free marketer and Rohrer, the AFP state director for PA, being a center-right favorite.

On the other side is Bob Casey who, at present, doesn’t have a serious primary opponent. As Casey is presented as pro-life, and many in PA vote very much on the basis of this issue, a strong pro-life advocate from the GOP seems to be prescribed.

Will John Vernon or Sam Rohrer be the proper counter to Bob Casey in the US Senate race in PA?

We do know both men and find both to be likeable, but if anyone thinks Vernon cannot compete with Rohrer, who ran for governor in 2010 losing in the primary, we know that Vernon’s bag of tricks might be exactly the kinds of moves that fit this current political climate. Without tipping our hat too much on embargoed information, it appears to us that Vernon is going to mount an unexpected campaign from unexpected quarters that could give him at least a 50/50 shot or better at winning the nod next year.

Either Rohrer or Vernon would be a better and more solid pick than the waffling Casey, but for staunch pro-lifers, like ourselves, the real question is which of these candidates is most likely to pro-actively carry the banner of life into the US Senate?

All three men claim to be pro-life, although Casey’s votes have caused many to question his sincerity on this issue.

Rohrer, however, has run afoul of himself in a recent AFP commendation on Tom Smith, a recent Democrat who is now running in the GOP primary and who is unlikely to garner much conservative support. The State chapter of Americans For Prosperity, an organization the Freedomist has always admired, praised Smith for signing a pledge against carbon taxes, url here:

The problem? While Rohrer praised Smith, a Democrat running as a GOP candidate, he left our John Vernon, who signed the same pledge. Perhaps this is because Vernon is his strongest rival for the GOP nod amongst conservatives.

One commenter noted:

Judy Brown says:
November 2, 2011 at 3:19 pm

Too bad Sam Rohrer doesn’t know that John Vernon already signed the American for Tax Reform pledge and the Contract from America.

Sam doesn’t mention that Smith was a democrat until about 6 weeks ago and donated to Jason Altmire and hasn’t donated to Republican challenger Keith Rothfus. And, while a democrat donated to Republicans.

Now how can Sam run against Smith?

Some have taken this as a sign that Rohrer does not intend to run, but others see this as acknowledging that Vernon is in fact his real chief rival and that giving some praise to the Democrat running as a Republican will make Rohrer look magnanimous without really helping someone who could never seriously challenge him, as Vernon can.

All of this is giving Vernon some real credibility as the insurgent candidate to beat, making for an interesting primary in which PA Voters will have a choice between two conservatives, one with more political experience (although Rohrer is not seen as a political insider) and one with an amazing ability to create a serious political challenge with almost no visible previous support (although that is changing as Vernon leverages his oratory, networking, and plain old-likeability with his creative and highly effective use of funds).

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