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Letters to the Editor

'No rift at all'

| Thursday, Oct. 30, 2003

As the chiefs of staff for Pennsylvania's U.S. senators, we can attest to the close working relationship between Arlen Specter and Rick Santorum.

Contrary to the contention of an Oct. 12 Whispers item that "Arlen is snarlin'" at Sen. Santorum and an editorial item Oct. 14 asking if Santorum had " finally had enough of Mr. Specter's grandstanding and faux conservatism," there is no "growing rift" between them. In fact, no rift at all.

Specter and Santorum have cooperated on a myriad of issues, including trying to ensure that US Airways continues to do business in Pennsylvania and in the nomination process for Pennsylvania's federal judicial nominees.

The contention that Specter would oppose nominations by Santorum does not make sense. Specter and Santorum sponsor a joint nominations panel that recommends judicial appointments to the president. Their cooperation in this process is one reason Pennsylvania has been so successful in having the state's nominations confirmed.

Santorum supports Specter, as do President Bush and Vice President Cheney. Our offices look forward to our continuing friendship and cooperative work environment.

Carey Lackman Michael Hershey Washington, D.C. Lackman is Specter's chief of staff and Hershey is Santorum's chief of staff.

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