Thursday, April 14, 2005

Youth and Experience: A Winning Combination

The Post-Gazette reports this afternoon that Pennsylvania State Senator John Pippy is seriously considering a run for Lieutenant Governor. With all of the speculation surrounding the race for the top spot on the Republican ticket to oppose Governor "Fast Eddie" Rendell in 2006, very little consideration has been given thus far to the number-two slot. The PoliticsPA website has started speculating on possible replacements for incumbent Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll should she decide not to run for a second term.

Pippy, a Republican from Moon Township in Allegheny County, is extremely popular in his district. As a State Representative, he repeatedly and decisively won reelection victories in a strong Democratic area. Two years ago, he won a special election to fill a vacant State Senate seat. His victory came at a most unusual time -- he was stationed in Iraq with the National Guard. No Democrat will ever be able to use the "Chickenhawk" slander against John Pippy.

Pippy can go a long way in politics given his age -- for all of his experience, he is but 34 years old. At my age, I am finally coming around to realizing that entire sports leagues, TV show casts, and public school faculties are younger than me. Forgive me for indulgently quoting Monty Python, but "I'm thirty-seven, I'm not old!" Sometimes, though, it sure feels like it.

All candidates for the Republican gubernatorial nomination need to take a serious look at Pippy. If he appeals to the rest of the commonwealth as he does to his home district, he could help turn Pennsylvania into a "red state".

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