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K Street Money Split Between Specter, Foe

Still, after 30 years in office, Specter’s K Street tentacles are far-reaching. His former aides include Craig Snyder of IKON Public Affairs, David Urban of American Continental Group, Jennifer Castagna of Washington Partners and Bill Morley of Altrius Group. James Twaddell of Drinker Biddle & Reath, Dan Renberg of Arent Fox and Michael Tetuan of Prism Public Affairs are also former Specter staffers.

Specter’s stable of former aides on K Street remains loyal.

Chief among them is Urban, a former chief of staff to Specter who remains close to the Pennsylvania Democrat.

“I’m continuing my support for Senator Specter because I believe his dedication and commitment to Pennsylvania are without equal,” Urban said. “He fights aggressively for his constituents back home and what he believes is in America’s best interest — changing the letter after his name hasn’t changed any of that.”

Urban has been a key member of Specter’s fundraising committee and is continuing to act in that capacity.

Morley, another longtime Specter aide, is also supporting him despite the party change.

“I think he made a decision he felt was necessary at the time — some people disagree with it, some agree with it,” Morley said. “I would have hoped that he would not have made that decision as a Republican and today he would be in a strong position electorally if he had stayed.”

A former legal counsel to Specter, Morley said that he isn’t asking for his political contribution back, but he hasn’t decided yet whether he’ll volunteer in the state this cycle.

While there has been little crossover between Specter’s and Toomey’s staffs, Aimee Steel of Holland & Knight had the rare opportunity of working in the communications office for both Pennsylvanians.

Steel said she enjoyed working for Specter directly out of college, but her politics are more in line with Toomey.

“I think that Pat’s support in 2004 and now stems from him being very principled in his conservative beliefs,” Steel said in an e-mail. “There is nothing knee-jerk about him; he studies policies and issues thoroughly before drawing conclusions.”

Shira Toeplitz contributed to this report.

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