4/28/2009

The problem with Arlen Specter

Senator Specter's explanation for becoming a Democrat is embarrissing -- it is for self preservation, not principle. Just so that he can win election, not to achieve a policy goal.

I am unwilling to have my twenty-nine year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate.


This is also pretty funny.

Since my election in 1980, as part of the Reagan Big Tent, the Republican Party has moved far to the right.


Does anyone believe that the party has moved further to the right since Ronald Reagan?

Specter apparently also switched without a promise that he would get any chairmanship of any committees. Given that his switch likely gives the Democrats a filibuster proof Senate, one would think that he had gotten a better deal.

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4 Comments:

Blogger 1 said...

Well this isn't the first time for Specter as Michael Barone notes: Party-switching is something Specter is adept at. He switched from the Democratic to the Republican party to run for District Attorney of Philadelphia County in 1965 and was elected that year and in 1969; he was defeated by Democrat Emmet Fitzpatrick in 1973, and then lost Republican primaries for senator (to John Heinz) in 1976 and governor (to Dick Thornburgh) in 1978, until he was elected to the Senate in 1980

4/29/2009 6:06 AM  
Blogger John said...

I suggest we name this kind of occurrence a "reverse Maury" incident, or effect. It was Matthew Fontaine Maury (1806 - 1873), U.S. Navy, who first uttered the phrase now more often attributed to Halsey: "When principle is involved, be deaf to expediency."

Clearly Specter and his ilk put self interest before principle, to the extent that one concludes they have no principles at all.

Good riddance!

4/29/2009 8:37 AM  
Blogger Nucleus said...

To answer your question, no! The republicans don't seem further right since Reagan.

4/29/2009 10:51 AM  
Blogger Zendo Deb said...

It isn't that they are farther right. It is what the emphasize.

When Gingrich was speaker, the primary focus - at leas so it seemed to me - was balancing the budget and reducing the size of government.

The past 2 elections have seen the whole "this is a Christian Country" anti-abortion, anti-gay-marriage wing of the party move forward. That and the old white geezer wing. (Didn't Bob Dole teach us that out-of-touch geezers don't win national elections?)

I guess this move is natural, considering that the Republicans would be laughed at if they said they stood for limited government, reduction in pork, ethics in government, etc.

I the idiot from Venezuela was right - George W. Bush did usher in the new age of American Socialism with the "too big to fail" mantra.

4/30/2009 2:47 PM  

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