Corman Not Running for U.S. Senate in 2012, He Says
State Sen. Jake Corman, R-Benner Township, has decided not to seek the Republican nomination for a U.S. Senate seat in 2012, he told StateCollege.com on Friday.
"I gave it a lot of thought, and I just didn't feel it was the right time for me to enter a statewide race," Corman said. "It is not something that I am going to seek."
Specifically, Corman said, he considered "family, professional life, what's in the best interest for (my) wife and kids, career, quality of life afterward -- all those kinds of things" in reaching his decision.
Earlier, Corman said late last year that he was considering whether to run in 2012 for the seat now held by U.S. Sen. Bob Casey Jr. Casey was elected in 2006 and assumed the office in 2007.
In a StateCollege.com interview in December, Corman said that he probably would not make a decision on a U.S. Senate run until the 2011-'12 state budget was complete. As chairman of the influential state Senate Appropriations Committee, he called the state budget his first priority.
That budget was settled this week, as the state House, state Senate and Gov. Tom Corbett reached an agreement on a roughly $27 billion spending plan.
Government spending also appeared at the root of Corman's considerations for a possible U.S. senatorial run. In the December interview, he said he was concerned that Casey's Senate voting record "has added to (the national debt) with his support of the stimulus and health-care bills."
"As a father, I'm concerned about the direction of the country and the massive debt that's been piled up over the past couple years," Corman said then.
Reached Friday, though, Corman said twice that he just doesn't think the timing is right for him to enter a statewide race.
He does not have a favorite Republican candidate to challenge Casey, either, though he's sure a variety of candidates will emerge, Corman said.
"Every race is about the incumbent," he said. " ... The incumbent will have to make a case on why he (should be) reelected and why the country is going in the right direction."
From Corman's view, though, "clearly the country has some major problems," he went on. And any challenger can point out that Casey has not done a very good job in solving them, Corman said.
"The debt is obviously the biggest problem," he said. "I suspect that the budget and the debt and the economy will be the biggest issues" in 2012.
Corman took office as a state senator in 1999 and was last reelected in 2010. Asked if he may run for statewide office eventually, Corman said he would not rule it out.
But he's not looking into it actively, he said.
"You never know where these turns take you," Corman. "You never rule anything out."
Meanwhile, Harrisburg attorney Marc Scaringi and Scranton Tea Party leader Laureen Cummings -- both Republicans -- have declared their respective 2012 candidacies for the Senate seat held by Casey, according to PoliticsPA.