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Author Topic: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority  (Read 1874 times)

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Offline Miss Philicia

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This is a pretty huge development.

link

Specter To Switch Parties

Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter will switch his party affiliation from Republican to Democrat and announced today that he will run in 2010 as a Democrat, according to a statement he released this morning.

Specter's decision would give Democrats a 60 seat filibuster proof majority in the Senate assuming Democrat Al Franken is eventually sworn in as the next Senator from Minnesota. (Former Sen. Norm Coleman is appealing Franken's victory in the state Supreme Court.)

"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."

Specter as a Democrat would also fundamentally alter the 2010 calculus in Pennsylvania as he was expected to face a difficult primary challenge next year from former Rep. Pat Toomey. The only announced Democrat in the race is former National Constitution Center head Joe Torsella although several other candidates are looking at the race.
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Offline Dachshund

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2009, 12:20:34 PM »
I'll take Spector at his word. As a moderate Republican he was hardly welcomed by the hard right that has become the Republican Party. Most importantly, without the filibuster I think we'll get healthcare done this year.

I'm elated.

Offline AndyArrow

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2009, 12:21:53 PM »
Sen. Spector has always been a moderate but I think his decision was based on his not being able to win re-election in 2010 as a Republican.
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Offline freewillie99

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2009, 12:25:39 PM »
Suck on that, Sarah Palin.
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2009, 12:29:10 PM »
As a resident of the City of Brotherly Love I will gladly volunteer for Senator Spector's reelection campaign.

But yes, Arlen read the poll numbers for the upcoming GOP primary here, and it wasn't pretty.  He barely won the last primary against Toomey.  He totally knew that this would happen by voting for the stimulus package.  The only GOP members left in this state are the Teabagging Weirdos who believe in birth certificate conspiracies and black helicopters.
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Offline bocker3

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2009, 03:50:15 PM »
Good news, indeed.  However, the filibuster proof majority is dependent on the Republicans actually letting the "election" in Minnesota end.  I keep reading that if Coleman loses a the Minnesota Supreme Court, he may take it to the US Supreme Court.  UGH!

Mike
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Offline mjmel

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2009, 05:54:53 PM »
Sen. Spector has always been a moderate but I think his decision was based on his not being able to win reelection in 2010 as a Republican.

Agreed. He is changing his colors because it enhances his chances for reelection. However, although he proclaimed to be moderate I believe he was considered very much a liberal among his peers. Many starch-collared Republicans are not even surprised by this recent self-serving alliance.

Mike

Offline denb45

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2009, 06:09:34 PM »
Oh, this aint over yet....I don't think the GOP is gonna give up a seat just like that, you watch, this aint over without a fight ,are maybe some-sorta lawsuit field by the GOP..........how would you feel if you voted for someone ,and put them in office, and they changed parties and become a GOP or DEM
 and I'm not taking sides on this issue, but, I think you get the idea, I'm sure....
« Last Edit: April 28, 2009, 06:12:48 PM by denb45 »
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Offline Ann

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2009, 07:54:45 PM »

...how would you feel if you voted for someone ,and put them in office, and they changed parties and become a GOP or DEM.
 

In an ideal world, people would vote for the better candidate, regardless of party affiliation. I vote based on what the candidate says and does about important issues, so if I liked a person's agenda well enough to vote for them, I probably wouldn't give a monkey's what party they decided to change to - unless they were also changing their views on the issues.

Ann
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Offline bocker3

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2009, 10:44:02 PM »
Oh, this aint over yet....I don't think the GOP is gonna give up a seat just like that, you watch, this aint over without a fight ,are maybe some-sorta lawsuit field by the GOP..........how would you feel if you voted for someone ,and put them in office, and they changed parties and become a GOP or DEM
 and I'm not taking sides on this issue, but, I think you get the idea, I'm sure....

Lawsuit?  on what grounds?  No one broke any laws here.  This isn't the first time this has happened.....  when the GOP took over in the 90's a couple of Senators switched -- i don't recall them all, but Shelby was one (Alabama, I believe).  Each time a party takes over, you tend to see some of these -- this time may seem big because of the filibuster proof potential for the Dems.  However, a bigger stir occurred when a Senator from Vermont (was it Jeffords, maybe?) went from Republican to Independent, but caucused with the Dems -- this threw control of the Senate to the Dems!

Of course, as Ann pointed out -- this is a great example why it is far better to vote for a PERSON than a PARTY.

Mike
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Offline Dachshund

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2009, 07:26:07 AM »
Oh, this aint over yet....I don't think the GOP is gonna give up a seat just like that, you watch, this aint over without a fight ,are maybe some-sorta lawsuit field by the GOP..........how would you feel if you voted for someone ,and put them in office, and they changed parties and become a GOP or DEM
 and I'm not taking sides on this issue, but, I think you get the idea, I'm sure....

Yes it is over, only to be decided by the voters of PA in 2010. 200,000 voters in PA switched from the Republican Party last year and are now registered Democrats. Looks like they feel pretty good about his switch.

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2009, 12:01:37 PM »
By the way, we should all thank Hillary for staying in the race through the PA primary.  As you may recall there was basically an intense month long build up for that primary with the focus primarily on Philadelphia and its suburbs. This effort lead to hoards on street corners with clip boards signing people up, and now we have a lingering effect from all of that.

Hard to believe that was just exactly a year ago now.
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Offline dtwpuck

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Re: PA Senator Spector to switch parties - gives Dems 60-seat majority
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2009, 07:06:55 AM »
Oh, this aint over yet....I don't think the GOP is gonna give up a seat just like that, you watch, this aint over without a fight ,are maybe some-sorta lawsuit field by the GOP..........how would you feel if you voted for someone ,and put them in office, and they changed parties and become a GOP or DEM
 and I'm not taking sides on this issue, but, I think you get the idea, I'm sure....

There is no law saying any Senator has to be a member of one party or another.  The US Constitution doesn't even recognize the existence of parties.  The fact that we are divided by party is merely a custom, not a law.  There are many examples of politicians (Senators even) switching parties in history, all of whom did so without any legal repurcussions.  (recently Jim Jeffords and Ben Nighthorse Campbell). 
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