Politics

McGinty Asked Podesta: Should I Run for Senate?

Pennsylvania Democrat faces Republican Sen. Pat Toomey next month

Katie McGinty. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In July of last year, Katie McGinty had a decision to make: Should she run for Senate? 

So the Pennsylvania Democrat sought advice from a man who knows plenty about politics — the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. 

McGinty emailed John Podesta on July 17, 2015, asking if she should run for Senate, according to a private email published by WikiLeaks. 

“Hey John — Emilys [sic] List and [Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee] have been working me hard [regarding] a US Senate run,” McGinty wrote. “Would love your perspective. Will need to decide one way or other by mid next week.”

A week later, McGinty would leave her job as chief of staff to Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, a prelude to her officially declaring she would seek the Democratic nomination for Senate. She faces Republican Sen. Pat Toomey in one of the election’s most competitive Senate races.

The interest in McGinty from the DSCC and EMILY’s List isn’t a surprise: Both groups spent heavily on her behalf in Pennsylvania’s Democratic primary, helping her defeat former Rep. Joe Sestak. 

The Obama Administration has accused the Russian government of supplying Wikileaks with the hacked emails of important officials in the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee. The publication of the private messages has become a headache for the Clinton campaign, though until now they have not mentioned other races.

Podesta, however, didn’t share his advice over email. 

“I’ll call,” he wrote back. 

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