In it, but not of it. TPM DC

BREAKING: Ridge Will Not Run For Senate In 2010

Ridge, a moderate of sorts, would drum Toomey if the primary were held today, according to one poll, and he's widely believed to be the Republicans' strongest potential candidate in the increasingly blue state.

That's mixed news for Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA). On the one hand, if he secures the Democratic nomination, he won't have to worry about defeating Ridge in the general election. And he'd likely be a very strong candidate against Toomey. But on the other hand, one of the key arguments for nominating Specter is his name recognition and strength in a general election. With Ridge out of the race, the risk to Democrats of a potential Joe Sestak candidacy are greatly diminished, and that may make Sestak yet more likely to run.

About The Author

Ivcd1zuomgpknmdsebhc

Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com