Toomey leaves Club for Growth, clearing path for Senate run

Club for Growth Chairman Pat Toomey has formally left that organization "to pursue other opportunities," clearing the way for a likely run for Senate in Pennsylvania.

The fiscal conservatives' group announced Toomey's departure, which has been long-expected, in an email today. The Club also announced former Rep. Chris Chocola (R-Ind.) would be taking over as head of the group.

Toomey has been moving steadily toward again challenging Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) in the 2010 Republican primary after having fallen just short of knocking off Specter in 2004.

"I feel extremely honored to have been able to lead such a great organization," Toomey said in a statement that praised Chocola. "And while I will certainly miss the Club for Growth, I am comforted knowing that the organization will be left in the capable and talented hands of my former congressional colleague."

"I wish Pat the best of luck on his new path and am confident that he will be successful in whatever he does," Chocola said. "I became a member of its Leadership Council because I believe in the Club