28 April 2009

Welcome To The Light, Senator

Senator Arlen Specter has switched from (R-PA) to (D-PA), which brings the Democrat total in the Senate to 59, with Al Franken waiting in the wings for Norm Coleman's petulant tirade court challenge to be over.

From Specter's statement this morning:

I have been a Republican since 1966. I have been working extremely hard for the Party, for its candidates and for the ideals of a Republican Party whose tent is big enough to welcome diverse points of view....

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.

Good news or great news?

What do y'all think?


Anonymous said...

Neither. Arlen was facing a challenge from the right in the primary and he'd probably have lost since all that's left of the Republican party are the certifiable. So, the wingnut would have faced a Dem in the general election and by all accounts lost horribly in a landslide since the avg person in PA is not batshit insane. The Dem could have won on that plank alone. "Vote for me! I'm not picking-corn-out-of-shit insane!" We might have gotten an honest-to-Goodness liberal out of it.

Instead, we get (yet another) Blue Dog Dem when either way, we'd've gotten our 60 no matter what.

Dusty said...

Arlen is speechifying now..and blasting the shit out of the Rethugs!

He is a moderate and probably a Blue Dog..but hey..welcome to the Light dude! ;)

Mauigirl said...

I think it's good news for the Democrats and bad news for the Republicans. They will become even less relevant to the majority of the American people since there are almost no moderates left now - they're all far right.

Ouyangdan said...

I think it depends on what he actually does, rather than on the pretty words he is spouting.

I've had enough words. I want to see actions. I want to see Dems do what we put them there to do, and stop pandering to Rethugs. If he can help do that, then this is great.

Boatboy_SRQ said...

I think it's instructive that someone as otherwise conservative as Specter feels left out of the modern GOP apparatus, but I can't help but agree with Christina that Specter simply changed parties to protect his seat.

MB and I talked this over last night. If Specter had gone Independent that might actually have been more powerful: the I'm no Democrat, but I won't be a Fascist either ploy might have said more about the state of the GOP and sent a stronger signal.

Speaking of which, MB and I are watching for Collins and Snowe to declare as Independent.