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Look out: Specter to host health care debate in Pennsylvania

UNIVERSITY PARK — The potentially volatile political dispute over health care reform is headed for State College on Wednesday as U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter plans a town hall meeting at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel.

Penn State spokeswoman Lisa Powers said police officers, including state police, will be present at the meeting at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Penn Stater's President’s Hall.

"There will be increased security, but again for events where we have crowds that's not unusual," Powers said. A Specter spokeswoman said that "we always ask police to be at the meeting and this year was no exception."

Local Democratic and Republican parties scheduled sign-making events for today to prepare for Wednesday's meeting, with accompanying messages inviting party members to bring partisan attitudes to bear on the senator’s appearance.

The Centre County Republican Party's Web site posted an "alert" about the Specter meeting and added: "This is a great opportunity to let Mr. Specter know that you reject deficit spending, taxes on energy, socialized medicine, and government takeovers of the private sector."

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