Joe Sestak

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Joe Sestak is a second-term member of the United States House of Representatives (Democrat) representing the 7th Congressional District of Pennsylvania. He is a retired vice admiral in the U.S. Navy, the highest-ranking officer to serve in Congress.

Committee assignments

Congressional caucuses

Naval career

He qualified as a Surface Warfare Office, and commanded USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58) named the best overall surface ship in the Atlantic Fleet in the Battenberg Cup selection, Commander, Destroyer Squadron Fourteen; Commander, Cruiser Destroyer Group Two and USS George Washington (CVN 73) Carrier Strike Group in both the Arabian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea.

He served as Flag Lieutenant to Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and on the Joint Staff in the Force Structure Resources and Assessment Directorate. He also served on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations as Head of the Strategy and Concepts Branch and Director of the Strategy and Policy Division. He was then the Director of the Navy Quadrennial Defense Review, after which he became the first Director of the Navy Operations Group (Deep Blue), a counterterrorism organization. In the Clinton Administration], he was the Director for Defense Policy on the National Security Council staff.

He served as Director, Assessment Division/ apability Analysis Group (N81/N00X) and as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Warfare Requirements and Programs (N6/N7) on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations.


Middle East

He has been targeted by the Emergency Committee for Israel, as part of broader criticism of Obama Administration Mideast policy. They have accused Sestak of "appearing at a fundraiser for the Council on American Islamic Relations, which it describes as an “anti-Israel organization the FBI called a ‘front group for Hamas.’” " and endorsing a letter against the Israeli blockade of Gaza. [1]

Denying the allegations, the Sestak campaign has sent a cease-and-desist latter to Comcast, which carries the ad. [2]

Voting ratings

Organization Rating Date
American Civil Liberties Union
American Conservative Union
Americans for Democratic Action
Cato Institute
Christian Coalition
Human Rights Campaign
League of Conservation Voters
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
National Rifle Association
National Right to Life Committee
National Taxpayers Union
U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Sources: Links to the voting ratings guides of the above organizations together with brief descriptive information on the organizations themselves, may be found at:

2008 Election

Candidate Party Vote total Percentage
Joe Sestak Democrat 209,955 59.59%
W. Craig Williams Republican 142,362 40.41%

Source: Federal Election Results - final official tally

2010 Elections

  • Primary election: May 11



  • Document package, Emergency Campaign for Israel
  • Letter to Charlie Thurston, President, Comcast Spotlight from Jared G. Solomon, General Counsel, Sestak for Senate, 16 July 2010