Arlen Specter, despite his past assurances is switching party affiliation from Republican to Democrat and announced today that he will run in 2010 as a Democrat. If Al Franken (ugh) is sworn in as the next senator from Minnesota (Former senator Norm Coleman is appealing) this would give Democrats a 60 seat filibuster proof majority in the Senate.
“I have decided to run for re-election in 2010 in the Democratic primary,” said Specter in a statement. “I am ready, willing and anxious to take on all comers and have my candidacy for re-election determined in a general election.”
He added: “Since my election in 1980, as part of the Reagan Big Tent, the Republican Party has moved far to the right. Last year, more than 200,000 Republicans in Pennsylvania changed their registration to become Democrats. I now find my political philosophy more in line with Democrats than Republicans.”
“…the Republican Party has moved far to the right”
I must have missed that, when did that happen?
In a March 17th interview with The Hill, Specter said he absolutely would not switch parties:
[Democrats] are trying very hard for the 60th vote. Got to give them credit for trying. But the answer is no.
I’m not going to discuss private talks I had with other people who may or may not be considered influential. But since those three people are in the public domain, I think it is appropriative to respond to those questions.
I am staying a Republican because I think I have an important role, a more important role, to play there. The United States very desperately needs a two-party system. That’s the basis of politics in America. I’m afraid we are becoming a one-party system, withRepublicansbecoming just a regional party with so little representation of the northeast or in the middle atlantic. I think as a governmental matter, it is very important to have a check and balance. That’s a very important principle in the operation of our government. In the constitution on Separation of powers.
And they wonder why we don’t trust congress.
This has nothing to do with what is best for the country and everything to do with what is best for Arlen’s reelection.
Because of the shrinking Republican vote in the state (Pennsylvania), Specter was seen as a dead man walking politically in the primary with polling showing him trailing Toomey by ten or more points. The bar for Specter to run as an independent was also extremely high due to the rules governing such a third party candidacy.
You may wonder why he didn’t declare himself an Independent as did Joe Lieberman. It’s simple, his pollster told him he could not win his next election as an Independent.
Welcome to Congress, please check your integrity at the door.
How many times we’ve heard the Republicans have not stuck to their conservative values and this was a major factor to losing their majority in congress. Republicans moving to the right?, I believe most conservatives would say just the opposite is true… the Republicans have moved to the left if anything.
The remark about the Republicans moving further “right” is pathetic, really pathetic.
It’s these kind of opportunist, self-serving power-plays that are frustrating Americans and a big part of what the Tax Day Tea Parties were all about.
Good riddance Arlen