Former Senator Arlen Specter Is Seriously Ill

Plus: PA Senate candidate equates rape to unwanted pregnancy, Tropical Storm Isaac felt in Jersey, Chris Christie prepares for GOP keynote address, and more of what Philly is buzzing about today.

Arlen Specter Hospitalized. Friends of Arlen Specter are saying the former senator from Pennsylvania has been hospitalized and is seriously ill. The 82-year-old politician/comedian was treated for Hodgkin’s disease in 2005 and again when his cancer returned in 2008. [Daily News]

Senate Candidate Tom Smith’s Rape Comment. Senator Bob Casey’s opponent in the upcoming November election, GOP candidate Tom Smith, really stepped in it on Monday when he equated rape to pregnancy out of wedlock. [Inquirer]

GOP Convention Heats Up Tonight. Ann Romney, Rick Santorum, and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will all deliver speeches at the Republican convention in Tampa on Tuesday evening. Mitt Romney is expected to have the official nomination by 6 p.m. [CBS 3]

Isaac Felt in Jersey. Rough seas forced authorities to rescue a boy pulled out by a rip current,  and the missing boater in Wildwood may be the result of rough seas caused by Tropical Storm Isaac, which is more than 1,100 miles away. []

Pantsless Man Attacks Nova Student. A half-naked man reportedly attempted to sexually assault a Villanova student. The woman says she answered a knock at her interior bedroom door a little after 3 a.m. Saturday and was met by a black male with no pants on. He reportedly had red fabric covering his face. He attempted to sexually assault her, but she fought him off and he fled. Police are still searching for a suspect. [NBC Philadelphia]

Chesco School Bus Fire. A school bus carrying students from Lionville Middle School in Chester County burst into flames just moments after the driver recognized there was a serious problem, phoned for help, and evacuated the children from the vehicle. [CBS 3]