National Journal's Alex Roarty (née PoliticsPA) has a piece today (subscribers only) looking at the potential challengers to Sen. Bob Casey in 2012 -- and he finds the field lacking. But one name that pops up for the first time in the piece is Upper St. Clair's U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy (photo above by PG's John Heller):
Rep. Tim Murphy, who represents suburban Pittsburgh, has informally discussed a possible run with party leaders, spokeswoman Susan Mosychuk confirmed. But she added: "The Senate bid isn’t something the congressman is pushing or stating or even organizing toward."
Also, Westmoreland County state Sen. Kim Ward throws some cold water on the talk of her bid:
State Sen. Kim Ward, another lawmaker riding the rumor mill, acknowledged that party leaders had courted her to run, but she told National Journal: "At this point, I would say I’m leaning more 'no' than 'yes.'"
Alex also tosses another name on the fire:
Former Gov. Mark Schweiker would be a big-name candidate, but talk of drafting him so far is just that. Republican insiders aren't betting their Eagles or Steelers Super Bowl tickets on it happening.
UPDATE 2 p.m.: OpenSecrets tells us, via a Dem source, that Schweiker gave $1,000 to Casey in January. So either he has had quite a change of heart over the past 11 months or there is really no chance he runs.