Specter Actually A Democrat Now!

Old news by many standards, but Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter has wisely jumped off the sinking, gun-clinging, bitter white ship that is the modern Republican Party.

Specter isn’t exactly Daniel Patrick Moynihan, but with Al Franken’s seemingly inevitable victory in Minnesota, this makes the 60-vote filibuster-proof majority at least attainable now.

The one thing I will say is that I do like Specter’s honesty about wanting to be re-elected. Plus, he’s always been “a moderate,” so this shouldn’t be a huge surprise.

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3 responses to “Specter Actually A Democrat Now!

  1. Don’t blow the victory horns yet. Even if Al Fraken wins, and the Dems get the 60 votes they need to make America a welfare state, it is not likely Specter will toe the party line. The fact is his voting record has cris-crossed the aisle. Furthermore, this is not the first time Specter has switched parties in order to not loose an election. Early in his career he switched from democrat to republican in order to win an election for district attorney. He made deals with political bosses then to gain power and he’s making deals with political bosses now to retain it. Ed Rendell has promised Specter he will run uncontested and Obama has promised an endorsement and all the money he needs. What about the people of Pennsylvania? Aren’t they being manipulated here? Aren’t they being used? The word “shameful” comes to mind.

    This is a clear cut case of opportunism where the wishes of one’s constituency (remember they voted for a republican not a democrat) and a regard for any sort of political conviction are dismissed and ignored for one’s personal political aspirations. It reminds me of Obama’s recent retreat from the assault weapons ban. Looks like Specter will make a fine democrat.

    • Like I said, or intimated at least, this isn’t the biggest political victory ever, but your logic has some cracks in it.

      If Specter is the political opportunist you make him out to be (and, really, I don’t disagree) then why would expect him not to vote with the Dems now on significant policy issues. He’s doing this switch so that he can keep his tit Senate job, which he knows he will lose in a primary.

      The Rendell thing is the true shame here, but that’s not all Specter’s doing, that’s Big Ed. As for Obama’s money, I think Specter has a very healthy war chest of his own.

      The other argument here (the constituency thing) also doesn’t quite work to its logical end. Specter has famously always been “a moderate,” which means that he was never exceptionally popular with the base of the Republican Party. By that virtue, in fact, it means that he has been quite popular with Democrats in the past, so you could make the argument that he’s actually serving an equally large part of his constituency by making this switch.

  2. Got to say reading through your blog has been a very enjoyable way to kill time at work.
    Love the political take, sense of humor and just blatant honesty.

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