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Jay Paterno, the son of legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, is running for Pennsylvania lieutenant governor.
Paterno has not run for political office before, although he did campaign for President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. He will be vying for the Democratic party nomination for the office and will be handing out petitions to get on the May 20 ballot, reports The Associated Press. The former assistant football coach had been expected to run for Congress, but decided to focus on a state office instead.
“What it really came down to for me is, where does my family come from?” Paterno said when making the announcement on Thursday.
Paterno left Penn State in 2011 and currently runs a non-profit group that focuses on malaria in Africa, notes Philly.com. He still calls State College, Penn. his home. He set up VoteJayPaterno.com as his campaign site.
“I’m going to come and challenge the conventional wisdom, simply because that’s what’s needed,” Paterno said. “I think people are looking for something new and fresh and that’s what I’m going to bring.”
Paterno’s famous father died in January 2012, just months after the university fired him over the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal.
Paterno has to find a way to make himself stand out in a large field for the lieutenant governor’s office. Six other candidates are also running for the Democratic nomination.