After 43 years of representing the GOP, Senator Arlen Specter has switched sides. The newly minted Democrat advised reporters he had become increasingly uncomfortable as a moderate in a party dominated by conservatives and bluntly admitted his decision was based on his assessment he could not win reelection as a Republican next year. President Obama stated he would lend Specter his full support throughout that upcoming campaign. Reaction from fellow Republicans has been, to put it bluntly, harsh. Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine called the defection “devastating news” and a wake-up call for the GOP to treat its moderate members better or face becoming a marginalized, mostly Southern party. Sen. Jim Inhofe felt outrage at the news, and delivered the following salvo:
“From what I understand, Senator Specter and his left-leaning positions would lose by 15 points in an upcoming Republican primary challenge. Therefore, switching parties seems to have been done out of desperation and finding a way – any way – to stay in Washington longer. The big question now will be whether Democrats in Pennsylvania will embrace Specter or defeat him in the upcoming Democratic primary. I believe the fact that a little known conservative Republican could gain such a lead, and force a long time moderate Senator to switch parties, is the first evidence of America getting fed-up with out of control billion dollar spending here in Washington. The outrage growing throughout the country may very well end up leading to another Republican revolution as last seen in 1994.”
Considering the hastiness of the decision, it’s no wonder Washington is up in arms. We’ll keep you posted on developments as they occur, especially if Lady Justice is called to take action.