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Arlen Specter isn’t leaving Washington quietly.

In his final speech on the Senate floor, the outgoing Republican-turned-Democrat sounded off on the tea party, the rise of partisanship in Congress and the “judicial activism” of the Supreme Court.

“Defeating your own is a form of sophisticated cannibalism,” the Pennsylvania senator said of the tea party activists who worked to defeat GOP centrists.

Specter bemoaned the loss of a Senate where both parties seemed to be interested in finding compromise, and he was especially critical of lawmakers who campaigned against their fellow members.

[See also: Winners and losers in the latest U.S. census data]

“That conduct was beyond contemplation in the Senate I joined 30 years ago,” Specter said. “Collegiality can obviously not be maintained when negotiating with someone simultaneously out to defeat you, especially within your own party.”

He called the increasing lack of civility in politics discouraging. “Civility is a state of mind,” Specter said. “It reflects respect for your opponents and for the institutions you serve together.” Political polarization, he said, will make civility in the upcoming Congress “more difficult [but] more necessary than ever.”

for full article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_theticket/in-final-senate-speech-specter-slams-political-cannabalism

     As Obama travels for his Chicago home to the Louisiana coast to view his the damages from the BP Oil crisis, as the press day winds down into a holiday weekend, the “transparent” Obama White House has released its “version” of the circumstances surrounding the alleged job offer to Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa) in exchange for him NOT running against Arlen Specter for the US Senate race.

        The White House version shows Pres. Bill Clinton playing the role of “old time” party boss making the overture to Sestak. Presumably, Clinton was acting at the behest of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, a former Cinton White House official. This report follows after Clinton lunched with Obama at the White House prior to his first press conference of 2010 on May 27th.

       Does this end the Sestak matter, or will Sestak’s expected statement cause more heartburn at the White House?

     The title says it all… Rep. Joe Sestak has defeated long term Senator Arlen Specter for the Democratic nomination for the US Senate in Pennsylvania. Sestak will face Pat Toomey in the General Election in November, with all polls showing Toomey as the victor.

     May 18th may be a “red-letter” date— or maybe that is “pink slip”.

    In several states, key primary elections may set the tone for the rest of the primaries, as well as the November midterm elections.

    First there is the special elections in Hawaii, in the district where Obama’s grandparent’s lived, to fill the seat of Rep. Neal Abercrombie (D-Hi)(who is running for Governor).  Republican Charles Djou is expected to defeat the Democrats, Ed Case and Colleen Hanabusa, in the district that is predominantly Democrat. The DCCC pulled its resources, since neither of the two Democrats would pull from the race.

      In Arkansas, Sen. Blanche Lincoln faces a tough battle in the Democrat primary, being challenged by Lt. Gov. Bill Halter. Even if Lincoln pulls off a victory on Tuesday, she is still unlikely to win in November.

      Kentucky’s Senate primary battle on the Republican side pits the Trey Grayson, the GOP endorsed candidate, against Dr. Rand Paul, the son of Rep. Ron Paul. Dr. Paul has the momentum of the Tea Party movement behind him, and as of today, has a 14 point lead over Grayson.

    But Pennsylvania will be a Super Tuesday focal point, with the Senate primary and the special election to fill the seat of the late John Murtha. In the race to fill Murtha’s seat, his aide Mark Critz, is in a dead heat match with his Republican opponent, Tim Burns. In a district that is 2-1 Democrat, Burns leads by a point in the polls.

      And the big showdown in Pennsylvania is between GOP turned Democrat (so I can win reelection) Sen. Arlen Specter against Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa). It has been alleged that the White House had attempted to get Sestak to leave the race months ago, and his momentum has built in the past few weeks, to where the race is virtually to close to call. For his part, Specter is banking on his “seniority” to keep him in office.

       I see the day going to Djou, Halter, Paul, Burns, and Sestak !

Not too long ago, going Democrat blue was the thing to do. But now, local voter registration offices are seeing red.

So how will a GOP surge play into an election year that’s packed with big races?

In 2008, we saw a big Democrat comeback in Congress.

But then, in the last general election, we saw what could be the beginning of a Republican rebound.

Both Lehigh and Northampton counties are reporting a trend of voters who have switched parties and are now Republicans.

See article at: http://www.wfmz.com/news/23224513/detail.html

      Rep. John Murtha, the colorful and controversial Democrat from western Pennsylvania, underwent gallbladder surgery last week, and today, has been readmitted to the hospital, in the intensive care unit. Murtha will be 78 in June. There is no indication yet as to what the present situation is, but it is obviously quite serious.

      Everyone wishes John Murtha a speedy recovery, but it highlights the “greying” of our Congress, and the added need to revisit the idea of term limits. When Frankin Roosevelt was elected at the onset of the Depression, and then re-elected three more times, many began to see the possibility of a Presidency that, over time in the hands of one person, could evolve into something else. That was why Washington chose to retire to Mt. Vernon after two terms in office, and it was that viewpoint that led to the adoption of the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution so soon after Roosevelt’s death.

       Yet our Representatives and our Senators do not have the same limitations. Joe Biden was elected when Nixon was President. Chris Dodd has decided NOT to seek a sixth term in the Senate. Ted Kennedy had served since 1962. Robert Byrd was elected to the House of Representatives in 1952, and has served in the Senate since 1959. Rep. John Dingell, at 83, has been elected to his seat 26 times. Arlen Specter will be 80 next week.

     This was not what our forefathers could have envisioned, particularly under the banner of “By the People, for the People, of the People“. What sense of the “real world” do these career politicians have, being within the confines of the Beltway for decades? The legislation that they forge has an impact on the daily lives of average Americans, yet these legislators have not worked in the private sector to understand the impact of their legislation. This is not to say that the work done by these Congressmen and Senators is not beneficial to the country. But there is a great deal of disconnect between Washington and their constituents, as the ObamaCare legislation has shown.

       The greying of our Congress is not new (Strom Thurmond and Claude Pepper come to mind), and there is benefit to the counsel of theiir generation. But at the same time, as Ted Kennedy’s illness showed, the representation of the constituency takes a back seat to the politics of a legacy. The only method to correct this is term limits.

 

“I’m going to treat you like a lady,” Mr. Specter shot back. “Now act like one.”

See the video @ http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2010/01/21/specter_tells_bachmann_to_act_like_a_lady.html

     Carly Fiorina is poised to give Mrs. Senator Barbara Boxer a great challenge for her California Senate seat, and we know that Arlen Specter and Chris Dodd are fighting to keep their jobs as career Senators. Dr. Rand Paul, son of liberterian Rep. Dr. Ron Paul, is mounting a Republican primary challenge in Kentucky. But the most watched and reported race is the Republican primary battle between Florida’s Gov. Charlie Crist against the Republican’s “rising star” Marco Rubio. Receiving emails from the campaigns of each of the candidates, on both sides, and watching the media coverage, Florida is a great race to watch.

      Today’s Florida Senate race story shows that the Governor is starting to react to the fact that Rubio has narrowed Crist’s lead in the polls, despite Crist’s backing from the state’s Republican Party and the Republican Senate campaign Committee:

The Miami Herald
A Real Senate Race
By Michael Putney
Wednesday, 12/2/09

No more Mr. Nice Guy? Nah, Charlie Crist is constitutionally incapable of not being a nice guy. But he’s capable of getting P.O.’d at Marco Rubio and irritated with the media over what he sees as their kid-glove treatment of his GOP Senate challenger.

Conservative opinion-shapers have been talking up Rubio as the only real Republican in the race. Rush Limbaugh recently mentioned Rubio and Reagan in the same breath while George Will, in his syndicated column and on ABC’s This Week, has praised Rubio’s intellectual heft and conservative bona fides.

Just a couple of months ago the notion that Crist could be beaten in the primary, much less the general election, was laughable. Except for Rubio, a 38-year-old Cuban-American lawyer from Miami whose political career appeared to have peaked as speaker of the Florida House.

Now, thanks to a lot of hard work, a shrewd strategy and a message that resonates with disgruntled conservatives, Rubio is gaining ground. Crist, by his own admission, is going through a “rough patch.”

The Hug that Gov. Crist cannot Shake!!

The rough patch, of course, is entirely of his own making. It was Crist who went on CNN and told Wolf Blitzer he didn’t “endorse” the president’s economic-stimulus plan. “Heck, I didn’t have a vote on the darned thing.” But Crist, as the whole political world knows, wrote ecstatic letters to the president praising the stimulus and gave Obama a big abrazo in Fort Myers last February.

for the full article: http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/other-views/story/1360987.html

New Democrat Specter loses committee seniorityWASHINGTON – Arlen Specter‘s switch to the Democratic Party has cost him his seniority on Senate committees.

The Senate passed a resolution Tuesday night that made him the most junior Democrat on the committees on which he serves. The resolution was passed after an agreement was reached between leadership in both parties and Specter, said Jim Manley, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. Manley said the seniority issue will be revisited after the 2010 elections.

Specter, 79, is seeking a sixth term next year in Pennsylvania. He has said he made the decision to end his four-decade relationship with the Republican Party because he was unlikely to win the nomination in a party that has grown increasingly conservative.

Full article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090506/ap_on_go_co/us_specter_committees

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