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So let's do the math -- in just a week as a Democrat, Specter voted against Obama's budget, said he wouldn't be a loyal Democrat, came out against Obama's health care plan, reiterated his opposition to EFCA, and said he's rooting for the Minnesota courts to overturn the will of the voters and re-seat Republican Norm Coleman.

But it's clear that his body is rejecting his (D) transplant, because he keeps rejecting any semblance of respect or appreciation for his new party.

Sen. Arlen Specter said Tuesday he regrets his vote against Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) two decades ago that helped kill his nomination to the federal bench.

Sessions, who has now assumed Specter's former position as the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, was nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1986 to be a federal judge — but Specter provided a key "no" vote after allegations were made that Sessions had a poor record on race relations as Alabama attorney general. Sessions has called those allegations false and unfounded.

Some of those "allegations" about the racist Sessions:

Senate Democrats tracked down a career Justice Department employee named J. Gerald Hebert, who testified, albeit reluctantly, that in a conversation between the two men Sessions had labeled the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU ) "un-American" and "Communist-inspired." Hebert said Sessions had claimed these groups "forced civil rights down the throats of people." In his confirmation hearings, Sessions sealed his own fate by saying such groups could be construed as "un-American" when "they involve themselves in promoting un-American positions" in foreign policy. Hebert testified that the young lawyer tended to "pop off" on such topics regularly, noting that Sessions had called a white civil rights lawyer a "disgrace to his race" for litigating voting rights cases. Sessions acknowledged making many of the statements attributed to him but claimed that most of the time he had been joking, saying he was sometimes "loose with [his] tongue." He further admitted to calling the Voting Rights Act of 1965 a "piece of intrusive legislation," a phrase he stood behind even in his confirmation hearings....

Another damaging witness--a black former assistant U.S. Attorney in Alabama named Thomas Figures--testified that, during a 1981 murder investigation involving the Ku Klux Klan, Sessions was heard by several colleagues commenting that he "used to think they [the Klan] were OK" until he found out some of them were "pot smokers." Sessions claimed the comment was clearly said in jest. Figures didn't see it that way. Sessions, he said, had called him "boy" and, after overhearing him chastise a secretary, warned him to "be careful what you say to white folks." Figures echoed Hebert's claims, saying he too had heard Sessions call various civil rights organizations, including the National Council of Churches and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, "un-American." Sessions denied the accusations but again admitted to frequently joking in an off-color sort of way. In his defense, he said he was not a racist, pointing out that his children went to integrated schools and that he had shared a hotel room with a black attorney several times.

Despite the "some of my best friends are black" defense, that Republican-dominated Senate committee had every reason to reject Sessions. That of all his votes in 40+ years, this is the one he picks out as the one he regrets most is bizarre, to say the least. That he says it now that he's supposedly a Democrat is yet another poke in the eye of his new party's electorate.

He's just begging for that primary challenge.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:52 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It's a lucky thing for Specter that... (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DelRPCV, Bob Friend, salmo, momoaizo, TomP, Maori

    there aren't many black voters in Pennsylvania.

    ;-)

  •  Ladies and gentlemen, your new Dem senator. (9+ / 0-)

    Don't you just wanna eat him up?

  •  Toast - (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    momoaizo, TomP, OleHippieChick

    not even golden brown, fragrant toast, but charred, black around the edges stinky toast.

    They tortured people to get false confessions to fraudulently justify our invading Iraq.

    by I love OCD on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:54:24 PM PDT

  •  You guys need to wake up (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TLS66, alliedoc

    and realize that you dont win elections by running your most liberal candidates in every state. If Sestak beats Specter in a primary, Ridge or even Toomey could end up winning. Like I said earlier, sometimes we have to make sacrifices, and we can't have everything we want. When we start trying to "purify" the party just as the Repubs are doing, its only a matter of time before we are the minority again. We finally have a Dem congress and white house, and I'm afraid greed and a lack of clear rational thinking will lead us back to the minority.

  •  I wish he had remained a Republican (6+ / 0-)

    Than we could have won against Toomey.

  •  I've been a big defender of Specter (9+ / 0-)

    but enough is enough.

  •  Give him the primary. (12+ / 0-)

    This is coming from someone that recently described Sestak as "meddlesome".

    As of today, I'll support Rep. Sestak.

    "Change has come to Washington, and I hope Karl Rove is ready for it. After two years of stonewalling, it's time for him to talk." Mr. John Conyers Jr.

    by Setrak on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:55:10 PM PDT

  •  It's all part of a grand GOP plot (7+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Trix, Chi, Harkov311, panicbean, gustynpip, TomP, skillet

    ..to find the only way to win the Senate seat in PA --foisting Specter on the Democrats!

    Those clever bastards!

    / 1/2 snark

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:55:21 PM PDT

  •  Specter is looking for a shortcut to China (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Trix, panicbean, Matt Z, TomP

    by digging.

    Dear GOP&Conservatives If all you have to offer are Cliches and Hyperbole then STFU. Thanks XOXOXO

    by JML9999 on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:55:45 PM PDT

  •  Specter has a unique gift... (9+ / 0-)

    Knowing how to become hated in both parties at the same time.

  •  You heard it here first (7+ / 0-)

    Specter switches back within 3 months.

    Smiting trolls on the tubes since 1977!

    by blue aardvark on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:56:12 PM PDT

  •  Primary his sorry (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Myrrander, gustynpip

    ass...better Toomey, a sure one-termer at worst, than Specter. He's no Democrat, and doesn't deserve to run as one. Pennsylvania can do better.

  •  Can we officially start campaigning (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, TomP

    for Sestak now?

    "Oh, your god!" -- Bender

    by Myrrander on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:56:16 PM PDT

  •  Still counting the Norm Coleman thing? (0+ / 0-)

    Even though with proper context, the quote appears to be made in jest, and it's being pushed by (of all people) Mark Halperin and the NRSC?

    There are legit reasons to be pissed at Specter, but on this point...calm down and wait for clarification before you do the Republican's bidding.

    Celebrate good Obama, come on!

    by Namtrix on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:56:30 PM PDT

  •  Where is JeffLieber? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP, Angry Mouse

    I would like to have a word with him.

  •  Which part does he regret most? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, panicbean, Matt Z, TomP

    Voting against a man who publicly called a black colleague "boy," or voting against a man who  said that the NAACP was un-American?

  •  Swarmy fuck. Didn't he cut Pandemic funding out (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave from Oregon, panicbean

    too?  His "Shield" only lasts if we decide not to do something about it.

  •  Can't he just be urged, strongly urged, (0+ / 0-)

    to retire now?

  •  Arlen Specter has beltway brain damage (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, gustynpip, shaf

    The symptoms are a belief that the voters verge on retarded and owe you a Senate seat.

    Senator, let's make one thing clear: you are not winning Republican votes in this next election.  ALL Republicans HATE you now, whether they're moderate or rightwing.

    You have to win PA the way Casey, Obama, Kerry, Rendell, Gore, and Clinton (twice) won it---by activating the Democratic base and winning the majority of independents.

    You are blowing that.  DFH Democrats like me never fraking liked you, because anyone who says that a bill is patently unconstitutional and then votes for it is not to be trusted.  But now you're driving other Democrats away from you as well.

    As for the independents, you are marking yourself as an opportunist, someone who switched parties solely for personal advantage with principle playing no element in the switch.  

    You better start talking about any actual principled reasons that made you leave the Republican party to become a Democrat, or your political career as a Democrat will be over before it begins (well, again, I guess, since you were in the 1960s).  

  •  Fuck Arlen Specter. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    one of 8, TomP

    And this coming from someone whose last diary was titled "Get well Senator Specter".

    Markos is spot on when he says that he didn't join the Democrats to have to deal with us, he just didn't want to deal with Toomey.

  •  some are saying on the other thread he (0+ / 0-)

    spoke of coleman winning tongue in cheek, haha kind of trying to be funny.

    That or the guy is showing signs of his age.

    Really what does he have to lose?

    He's been promised his run, so he can push the envelope.

    If this is the best and the brightest, it's time for the average and mediocre.

    by on2them on Tue May 05, 2009 at 02:59:52 PM PDT

  •  I'm frankly worried. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gustynpip, TomP

    We have a lot of diaries doing the happy dance over the demise of the GOP, but moderates have to go someplace, and it would be the height of foolishness to ignore an uprising of Reagan Democrats, or what I think of as corporate tool "Sim-O-Crats" who are bought and paid for by big insurance, big oil, or big pork, and vote conservatively e.g. against the environment, against the middle and working class, and against anything that might improve the lives of U.S. citizens who are not corporate magnates.

    We need to seriously consider that he may not have been joining our party, but a faction within our party that is going to morph into the Republican Party.  Specter may be a one man operation chaos, and he deserves to be primaried by a more progressive Dem.

    •  I am afraid you're right (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP

      The billionaires who run the GOP need a new party without the toxic assets of the religious right. What easier way than to split off the corrupt plutocrat first members of both parties?

      Smiting trolls on the tubes since 1977!

      by blue aardvark on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:03:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's been my fear as I've seen the goopers (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TomP

      falling apart; that the "moderate" (ie bluedog) Dems and the somewhat moderate (ie right, but not quite so far right they can no longer see the horizon) rethugs would get together and pose a threat to real change.  If the goopers and gone, that "center", which is really right, would be the only place for the right wingers to go, and so we'd be essentially back to where we were before Bushco provided so much evidence of who the rethugs really are.

      •  Sadly, a lot of sim-p-crats (0+ / 0-)

        are so visibly in this category that we're unlikely to get a single payer health care system without a national grass roots campaign, which we'd better get going on soon . . . a march on Washington, and plenty of effigies of Sim-o-crat corporate toadies and Goopers.

        I am so effing fed up with corporations and I am again sadly aware of how little integrity there could be in Washington and the corporate rape of our nation.

        It is truly no longer a democracy, and our President, however well intentioned doesn't have honor among his colleagues.

  •  bipartisanship (0+ / 0-)

    It's always nice to see politicians who cross party lines, even if that means joining another party.  I think more politicians like this are necessary to tackle some of today's biggest issues such as global malaria, measles, and malnutrition.  The Borgen Project has good info on the estimated cost of ending global poverty:

    $30 billion: Annual shortfall to end world hunger.

    $550 billion: U.S. Defense budget.

  •  Specter doesn't regret ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP, blue aardvark

    ... voting for the Iraq War Resolution?

    Voting for the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003?

    Voting for the 2001 and 2003 Budget Conference Reports, which allowed for using reconcilliation to pass the Bush tax cuts, which Specter said was the main reason he opposed this year's budget?

    Wow.  Just wow.

  •  Fish. Wrapper. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP

    Specter stinks.

    Specter is begging for his career to sleep with the fishes.

    Double entendre.

    As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.

    by Palamedes on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:01:28 PM PDT

  •  And please don't forget (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gustynpip, TomP, acadia

    His recent statement that he doesn't regret his 'tortureous' intergation of Anita Hill. At that time he did more to remind me why I can't vote for Republicans than almost anything I can think of. Of course the Nixon years did the deed first.

    If you don't stick to your values when they are being tested, then they aren't values, they're hobbies!" Jon Stewart 1-22-09

    by gabie on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:01:30 PM PDT

  •  Money for nothing. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP

    Please, please show me a Democratic opponent for Specter so I will have someone to give my money to in that race.

  •  More on Sessions (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP

    At the time of the Sessions nomination, a number of his writings appeared in the public prints.  He was, apparently, incapable of crafting a simple declarative sentence.

    He was widely regarded at the time as incredibly stupid and a third-rate lawyer.  I have no sources on hand to tap.  I simply remember this first-hand and am old enough to do so.

  •  Primary the loser ! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TomP
  •  I hope Pennsylvania Democrats... (0+ / 0-)

    ...nominate a real Democrat in their Senate primary instead of an opportunist whose real reason for switching wasn't because of principle but because of his need to save his own political skin. We don't need that kind of a man on our side, and I hope Pennsylvania Democrats throw him under the bus in next year's primary.

    "He brings a knife, you bring a gun. He takes one of yours to the hospital, you take one of his to the morgue. That's the Chicago way."--from The Untouchables

    by alaprst on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:10:47 PM PDT

  •  Democrat in Name Only (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, TomP

    don't forget the mantra, More and Better democrats. if arlen specter acts like an ass now that he's joined the democratic party, then maybe it's time to give him a primary he'll never forget. so what if obama promised not to back another candidate -- obama doesn't necessarily have to put much effort into supporting specter -- he's got a lot of other shit on his plate. if specter won't support democratic issues, then FUCK HIM.

    "Procrastination is the thief of time." -- MLK jr.

    by jsepeta on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:13:03 PM PDT

    •  There's nothing to prevent Obama (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Chi

      from being publicly disappointed at the way Specter has set fire to the house that took him in in his time of need. And therefore no longer be able to support his reelection bid.

      Everybody talkin' 'bout Heaven ain't goin' there -- Mahalia Jackson

      by DaveW on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:21:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "He's just begging for that primary challenge." (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi, TomP

    nope, he is demanding one.

    "80% of Republicans want Palin to lead the Republican Party and 100% of Democrats want her to lead the Republican Party." Bill Maher

    by Dave from Oregon on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:13:43 PM PDT

  •  But he does not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi

    regret trashing Anita Hill and voting for Clarence Thomas.

    Arlen is making Lieberscum look better, and I did not think that was possible.

    They tortured people to get false confessions to fraudulently justify our invading Iraq.

    by TomP on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:17:46 PM PDT

  •  What is pissing me off about Specter... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chi

    ...is he's doing one thing after another since switching to seemingly focus the attention on him. It's all about HIM. Let's call it the Joe Lieberman syndrome.

    The irony is that they convey the opposite affect of what they intend. They're trying to look oh-so-mavericky and "independent" but in reality the they look like the world's most arrogant, pompous, self-serving fools, serving nobody but themselves and their own egos and ambitions.

    I don't expect Specter to suddenly become Paul Wellstone, but at the very least he should STFU and lay low and get acquainted with his new role. He's the new guy in town and he has to wait in the BACK of the line. I mean, what is he trying to do here, get Obama to kiss his you-know-what? Win friends with his former party? I honestly have no idea what his MO is here. However this ends up, it can't be good for him. I mean does he just want OUT of politics at this point? Somehow that doesn't seem like the answer.

  •  So (0+ / 0-)

    He isn't really a Democrat, whether by words or deeds. Why is he still in our party? Can't he go Independent or something? I like having a big tent as much as anyone else, but this is ridiculous. He doesn't share any of our views on anything.

    Some say we need a third party. I wish we had a second party. -- Jim Hightower

    by joe m on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:26:35 PM PDT

  •  Specter is the ultimate con man. (0+ / 0-)

    He has supposedly conned the White house and many in the democratic leadership to buy his game, and like fools not seeing the truth when it's shown to them this so called dem leaders keep acting a fool.

  •  Just had to write a letter (0+ / 0-)

    Oh, Arlen.  the shitstorm's just starting.

    Dear Senator:

    You don't know me. I live in Ohio so Sherrod Brown is my Senator.  It may not seem to you that I have anything to say that really matters to you.  But, I do.

    I am a member of the ever expanding netroots.  I'm sure you've heard of us. I am also a lifelong Democrat.  I was one of the 18 year olds who got the vote back in the 70's so I've been around a while.  I know who you are, and I know a bit about your history.

    With regard to your upcoming run for re-election, I want you to know that regardless of who inside the beltway has promised what to you , or in the PA capital for all that, when it comes to elections it is people like me who will determine what actually happens.

    Keep on dumping on Democratic values.  Keep insulting Democrats by supporting losing Republican candidates versus Democratic candidates who actually have won their seat.  Keep on telling us how you are opposed to labor, healthcare for all, and so many other programs supported by Democrats. Keep on telling us you have no intention of being a "loyal" Democrat, whatever that means.

    And, while you're doing all of that, remember that we can, and will, primary you when re-election time comes around.  We can, and will, put a true Democrat in your Senate seat. The powers that be may have promised that you would not be primaried, but there is only so far they will go in the face of an electorate demanding more.  There's a whole lot of us out here who won't go along so easily, and who have the ability to make certain that you will not run unopposed in a Democratic primary.

    If you think people outside of Pennsylvania cannot have any real effect on Pennsylvania elections, I would encourage you to speak with Senator Tester and Senator Webb. You might even want to ask the newly elected Congressman from  NY.  Ask them what the netroots can do.  To us it's no longer about more Democrats, it's about better Democrats.  Are you a better Democrat?  So far, I don't think so.

    You joined our party to save your job - nothing more, nothing less.  If you expect a free ride you're wrong.  We're watching you.  If you expect Democrats to support you I encourage you do more to support our efforts.  We don't need any more Democrats-in-name-only, and we certainly won't be re-employing any of them come the next election cycle.

    All politics are local politics.  You're going to have to run in 50 states, and if you think for one minute we're going to let you take Pennsylvania,  think again.  There's a reason we are called the "United" States.  We are united, and those of us in the other 49 states are not going to turn our backs on our neighbors in Pennsylvania.  It's a new day, Senator.  

    Sincerely,
    XXXX

    .
    Maybe this will only give some staffer a good laugh, but it made me feel better.

    Peace.

    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.

    by Ninepatch on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:34:26 PM PDT

  •  I've been in the (0+ / 0-)

    "give Specter a chance" camp and shaking my head at those who seemed to have itchy trigger fingers in regard to primarying the guy, partly because I want to see more GOP defectors.  However, Arlen is surely but surely trying my patience with these statements.  I'll still give him a couple of months to establish his Democratic bona fides, but right now I'm willing to say in regard to that that it doesn't look good.  I don't blame Obama or Biden for this, I think Specter did give them assurances.  Specter reminds me of the witness in a novel, movie or TV show who tells the lawyers he's testifying for one thing in private, but when he gets on the stand, he says something completely the opposite.

  •  Oy ! (0+ / 0-)

    This guy Spektor is becoming a somewhat stinky fish.
    Can we toss him back ???

    Shit shall happen, with or without my help.

    by olo on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:42:29 PM PDT

  •  Time for a primary challenge! (0+ / 0-)

    How can Joe Sestak not jump into the race when Specter is doing all that he possibly can to alienate Democrats?

    Remember that Joe Hoeffel did get 42% of the vote in the general election against Specter in 2004 - which probably means that more Democrats voted for Hoeffel than Specter that year.  If Specter thinks that he can cruise to a Democratic nomination, he is sadly mistaken.

    I'm a Penn State alum who's now living in NC, but I'll do everything that I can to help Sestak win the Democratic nomination in PA next year.  All that he needs to do is enter the race, and I'll be donating to his campaign!

  •  I guess this is who Arlen Specter really is: (0+ / 0-)

    A racist-supporting pig fucker who hates workers' rights.

    "The strictest law sometimes becomes the severest injustice." -- Ben Franklin

    by Ouroboros on Tue May 05, 2009 at 03:49:42 PM PDT

  •  Can we please oblige the Senator from PA (0+ / 0-)

    and give him that primary challenge he so richly deserves?

  •  Truly a DINO! (0+ / 0-)

    Que the goposaurus and pin it squarely on Arlen's forehead!

    While one may have to spit every time his name comes up, if we just keep feeding him rope he'll take care of dirty work all by himself.

  •  Perhaps it's time for Obama or Biden to (0+ / 0-)

    draw Specter aside the way Obama drew Lieberman aside after winning the nomination. Ever since Obama did so, Lieberman has not been badnouthing us. Perhaps Biden can tell Specter "You chose to screw me! I put my credibility on the line to get your sorry ass into our party and this is the way you treat us?  Well, no siree .... Barack told me to tell you this, and you listen good, keep this crap up and we will do NOTHING to help you!  I don't give a shit what we promised .... you promised me you would not undercut us if you joined.  If you can already crap on that promise, we can crap on ours." Well, I know that's what LBJ would do.

  •  I am one of those people who are eternally (0+ / 0-)

    optimistic.  When I heard the news about Specter, I thought ... Wow.  He is trying.  Good for him.  

    And, I proclaimed my support of Rendell's maneuvering and the "party line".

    But I also am a person who has a strong "fool me once" streak.  I was fooled and I have become just as rabid in my anger at Specter as I was in my hope that he had figured it it.

    I even have been planning a diary, but don't have time, describing my new opinion:

    ARLEN SPECTER IS A GOP MOLE.

    He is a spy, a mole trying to bring us down.  My new agenda is to research the PA dems (from the inside) and figure out who would be the best candidate for the primary.  Then, I'm going to tell Rendell so ...

  •  He is just begging for two primary opponents (0+ / 0-)

    Specter is not stupid.  All this highlights why progressive Democrats should loath the guy.  The obvious strategy is to split the progressive vote in the primary by making sure he has multiple opponents.  He already has one, but maybe that challenger is not the strongest progressive Democrat.  So, Specter gets Sestak to challenge too, and if more come in so much the better for the Specter plan.  The progressives split their vote, Specter wins the primary on a plurality, and he is on the his contest with Toomey in the general election.  There the classic lesser of two evils choice is presented, and Specter thinks this is his best shot at six more years.  He is probably right.  Countering that plan will take organization and discipline, and he is playing to what has traditionally been our weakness.  

  •  Don't want to be callous, but.. (0+ / 0-)

    I had a friend who started acting out of character when his brain started being affected by metastases. Or is this just in character?

    Moderation in most things. Except Reactors. IFR forever!

    by billmosby on Tue May 05, 2009 at 04:15:44 PM PDT

  •  Let's go Sestak! (0+ / 0-)

    Seriously, I'm done with Spector and it took less than a week.  It's almost impressive.

  •  Sestak got some of my dough today (0+ / 0-)

    I hope he primaries the bastard.

    The only newscaster on Fox that you can trust is Kent Brockman.

    by Van Buren on Tue May 05, 2009 at 04:27:08 PM PDT

  •  current predictions from Five Thirty Eight blog (0+ / 0-)

    "... 12.  Pennsylvania (R- D-Specter)
    In some sense, this was the first victory of the 2010 cycle for the Democrats -- although considering Specter's voting record thus far, it looks as though it might be something of a Pyrrhic one. Nevertheless, this is now considered a Democratic seat, and this rating now reflects the Republicans' odds of winning it back in 2010, either against Specter or another Democrat like Joe Sestak.

    A Republican comeback is unlikely if the uber-conservative Pat Toomey is the Republican nominee. But if ex-Gov. Tom Ridge runs -- and wins -- instead, he would be a formidable opponent. The catch is that it isn't clear how Ridge, like Specter a moderate, pro-choice Republican, will escape the problems that drove Specter from the party, as what's left of the GOP base in Pennsylvania is highly conservative and pro-life. We should know more in a week or so -- if you're a Pennsylvania voter and weren't at Citizens' Bank Park watching the Phillies and the Mets get rained out, you were probably getting nonstop phone calls from pollsters."

    An unexamined life is not worth living - Socrates

    by crone on Tue May 05, 2009 at 04:44:49 PM PDT

  •  Oh, he was joking. (0+ / 0-)

    How come I do not get it?

  •  His new colleagues need to show him how to change (0+ / 0-)
    the channel from Fox News.  The man is clearly fact-starved!
  •  It's WAY too soon to decide (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    miller415

    whether to support him or not.  We need to see what he actually votes for and against, in committee and on the floor.  If he's reelected, he'll do whatever he damn well pleases.  Meantime, there's no point speculating what he may or not do.  He's just too slippery.

  •  Has anyone considered... (0+ / 0-)

    ...that maybe Arlen wants a primary, and wants to lose in a Democratic primary?
    Arlen Specter Switching Parties

    "I have traveled the State, talked to Republican leaders and office-holders and my supporters and I have carefully examined public opinion. It has become clear to me that the stimulus vote caused a schism which makes our differences irreconcilable. On this state of the record, I am unwilling to have my twenty-nine year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate."

    As many have pointed out, he's had a 29 year career, survived three bouts of cancer, and most recently watched the Republican ascendancy destroyed by Karl Rove. I'd think that a man in that position might be looking forward to retirement.
    It seems obvious to me that if he had remained a Republican facing off against Toomey and the Club for Growth, then he would have been absolutely savaged during the primary campaign. His reputation, his record, his personal life, and god knows what else would have been dragged through the mud.
    By switching to the Democratic party, then loudly restating his opposition to the President's agenda, he gets to maintain his Village awarded reputation as a principled moderate Republican. If he loses in a Democratic primary, he at least loses on his undistorted record running against a Democrat, and gets to keep his conservative credentials.
    If this is at all a possible explanation for his behavior, then the only part I can't account for is why he chose not to simply retire. It may be that he is genuinely upset with the hard right fringe that has taken over the GOP and is using this as a chance to fire a warning shot across their bow.

  •  Does anyone else notice that... (0+ / 0-)

    Sen. Specter-(C-Confused) is not the only "democratic" Senator that does not hold the same views of the democratic party?

    Blanche Lincoln (W-Walmart) and Evan Bayh (C- Citicorp)just to name a couple.

    In seems that the dems need 100 Democratic Senators so they can have the 60 Vote majority to overide a fake filibuster.

    I still think we should hold other Senators accountible for their parties vote.  I don't care how Reid, Schumer, Durbin, Reed, Whitehouse, Kerry, at el voted.  If, let say the bankuptcy bill, or the card check bill doesn't pass, then they all should be blamed.  Maybe it's time to change the lot of them.  It may not sound fair, but we haven't been treated too fairly in the last 30-400 years.

    There are 2 types of people I don't trust:
    Those who never agree with me and those who always agree with me.

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