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An Alternate Theory on Specter Switch

The obvious reason that Arlen Specter switched parties is that he saw he could not win the Republican primary and would soon be an ex-Senator if he didn't switch to run in the Democrat primary. Maybe things aren't so obvious though. I just read at Politico that Joe Biden talked to Specter 14 times.

In the Democratic Party's courtship of Arlen Specter, no one may have played a bigger role than Vice President Joe Biden.

Biden has been trying to convince Specter to switch parties for at least the past five years, but those efforts were stepped up once he was sworn in as vice president, a senior White House official said.

Biden has met or spoken on the phone with Specter an average of once a week since the Inauguration. And after Specter became one of three Senate Republicans to support the administration's stimulus package, those conversations were increased.

Maybe it was not a desperate, last ditch effort to save his political hide after all. Maybe Specter just wanted to shut Joe Biden up. It's not like he'd be the only person Joe Biden had driven crazy.

Update: There have been some interesting (and amusing) comments re Specter on Twitter since the announcement. You can do a Twitter search for Specter to find them. Also, if you are not following Wizbang's Twitter feed, do it now.


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Comments (16)

As long as we're "shutting ... (Below threshold)

As long as we're "shutting people up" can we please ad Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) to the list.

Doesn't matter if you're right or left, it's hard to deny that this one is 1 shingle short of a roof.

I really think she's starting to lose it.

1. Agree w #1 on Bachmann.<... (Below threshold)

1. Agree w #1 on Bachmann.

2. This ability to change parties "mid-stream"... what does that tell the voters who pulled the lever on a party line?

Speaking of Bachmann:<bloc... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Speaking of Bachmann:

" I find it interesting that it was back in the 1970s that the swine flu broke out then under another Democrat president Jimmy Carter. And I'm not blaming this on President Obama, I just think it's an interesting coincidence."

Actually swine fever broke out in 1976, when Gerald Ford was the president; not that it matters, except to some demogogic political figures, like Bachmann, who doensn't seem embarrassed by her erroneous accusations and odious comparisons...and really making a similar political statement, as Rush Limbaugh did about swine flu and Obama- going to Mexico at the same time -shows why Specter, as calculating (and oily) as he is, had no future with the likes and popularity of Bachmann and Palin in Rush Limbaugh land.

"2. This ability to cha... (Below threshold)
marc:

"2. This ability to change parties "mid-stream"... what does that tell the voters who pulled the lever on a party line?"

Umm,,, fuck you?!

Perhaps Arlen wants to be a... (Below threshold)
Bob:

Perhaps Arlen wants to be a Dem so, if he loses the next election, the Big O will appoint him to some gov't job- which he's more likely to do if Spector is a Republican.

Michael Steele's comment on Spector-Defector was great, saying essentially "Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out [of the party]."

Photo of Biden meeting with... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Photo of Biden meeting with Specter on Feb 7th:

http://www.bagnewsnotes.com/2009/04/peace-train-republished.html


This alternate theory, like... (Below threshold)
epador:

This alternate theory, like alternative energy, alternative medicine and alternative minimal tax, belongs in the alternative waste basket.

I disagree, epador.<p... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

I disagree, epador.

Inside the beltway, there's obviously something wrong. You get folks elected, and after a while (if they're sensitive to it) they become what they professed to despise. Obviously there's an infective agent there somewhere, rather like the swine flu, which induces delusions of grandeur and megalomania. They become the 'only ones' who can do the job right - so they've GOT to stay there, any way they can!

What else might induce an almost 80-year old man, already set for life, to toss out a party affliation just to make sure he has a slightly better chance to be elected?

It might be best to quarantine that whole area and the affected population. Yes, it'll be rough on those in the zone which AREN'T infected with this contagion, but I'm starting to think complete isolation until no sign of the infection is apparent is the way to go here... no matter HOW long it might take.

JLawson:The alternat... (Below threshold)
epador:

JLawson:
The alternate theory was that he wanted to shut up Joe Biden. Going over to the Dem side will not shut up Joe, just make him more talkative. Just as Alternative Fuels waste more energy, alternative medicine wastes money and diverts people from appropriate care, and the AMT diverts more money to the government, this alternate theory needs to be debunked.

Arlan went over to the dark side about 30 years ago. He's just jumped under the Emperor's cape before the coup d'etat is complete.

BTW, JL, I believe that Ira... (Below threshold)
epador:

BTW, JL, I believe that Iran and Kim iz Nutz are contemplating turning the DC area into glass, which ought to sterilize the area pretty well.

I suppose it could be calle... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

I suppose it could be called expedited urban demolition and preparation for renewal...

But when Holy Joe Lieberman... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

But when Holy Joe Lieberman started the Independent Democratic Party (members:1), because he lost the Dem primary, he did it entirely on principle! And if John McCain had been smart enough to offer him the VP nod, Holy Joe would have refused, on principle!

Yessir, Lieberman is principled, but Spector is a real snake-in-the-grass.

Lorie, You should know that... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

Lorie, You should know that political defections to the winning side have been not uncommon since the Reagan era when the switch was mostly in reverse: Gramm(TX), Campbell(CO), Shelby(AL), etc. Sometimes shortly after election night.

As for blaming someone, the Republican party has been tossing over its members to control the news cycle since the END of the Reagan era: the Trent Lott sacrifice was promoted via the pages of National Review, for example.

National Reveiw (Frum, Lowery) attempted a party purge of "Unpatriotic Republicans" not in support of the war in Iraq.

(I cite NR as one of the half dozen mouthpieces with even 20% credibility with it own public; the RNC has less)

Also (and I mentioned this when it happened HERE, at Wizbang, and it applies to my first (Lott) example above), the attempted expulsion of Larry Craig and Craig's humane defense by SPECTER; I'm no Specter fan ("magic bullet" B.S., etc) but even Specter found the self-righteousness of GOP horn-dogs and closet queens PUBLICLY black-balling an outed bisexual colleague as...cowardly, sniveling, and hypocritical.

Hey, Specter was willing to play Spend-O-Rama with the GOP, but the GOP are not worth covering-up or lying (on spending, etc) for, or requiring acting classes to rewrite and explain GOP history.

On the bright side, you still have Bobby Hindi.

Specter "just wanted Biden ... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

Specter "just wanted Biden to shut up?" No, you had it right the first time. Specter changed parties because he knew the republican primary would be a first class gamble at best and in all probability, a loser. Like virtually every other member of the Senate, Specter is far more interested in power and the accumulation of wealth than in the well-being of the US or the rights and liberties of its citizens. He is a typical political thug.

Bruce Henry"Yessir, ... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Bruce Henry
"Yessir, Lieberman is principled, but Spector is a real snake-in-the-grass"

You should be talking about principled. YOu still owe Kim an apology claiming she pulled something out of her ass.

Also you owe apologies to all the service men and women whom have died while you state they have been sucking up your tax dollars for job training. For myself and for them I wholeheartedly say

SCREW YOU.

Oh and BruceTry ta... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Oh and Bruce

Try talking about principles when you have found yours. They are where your testicles are hiding.




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