Sanity Injection

Injecting a dose of sanity into your day’s news and current events.

Arlen Specter switches to Democrats, fails test

Posted by sanityinjection on April 28, 2009

Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter (R) announced today that he was switching parties to become a Democrat. He claimed that his political philosophy is now more in line with the Democratic Party.

On the surface, this seems plausible because Specter is a moderate (some would say liberal) Republican with a long history of independence. However, the collective snorts of the political class could be heard all the way across the tidal pool.

You see, Specter is expected to be defeated in the Republican primary next year. So now he gets to run as a Democrat and face no primary opponent. His chances of beating Toomey are much better in a general election, witht he full support of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party, than in a Republican primary fight. Also, Specter’s defection, together with the expected victory of Al Franken in Minnesota, gives the Democrats a 60-40 filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. In other words, two-party government in Washington will now be a thing of the past.

Needless to say, you can bet the Democrats offered Specter some goodies – committee assignments, etc. in exchange for handing them the keys to the Senate. So let’s not pretend that Specter’s decision was motivated by anything more than self-preservation. If this were a real crisis of conscience, Specter could become an independent.

Which is why I say that Specter has failed the most fundamental test of qualification for public office. He has abandoned his principles purely for personal advantage. And that’s a shame. At one time I admired Specter, but no longer.

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One Response to “Arlen Specter switches to Democrats, fails test”

  1. sanityinjection said

    Irony, thy name is Specter:

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-specter-jeffords29-2009apr29,0,2430682.story

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