Saturday, May 22, 2010

Ignore That Man Behind The Curtain

Peek-a-Boo! We saw you. That's Arlen Specter emerging from the voting booth in Pennsylvania's Democratic Primary. Democrat turned Republican turned Democrat, Snarlin' Arlen was handed his walking papers despite his vote for himself. Specter finally lost the ability to scare Dorothy and her non-Kansan companions in Pennsylvania and unless he pulls a Dracula, will be gone from America's nightmares forever. Anybody out there who will bring the torch, gravedigger's shovel and wooden stake?

OK, I'm done with the mixed metaphors for the day (until I can come up with some more). It was not a good day for establishment politicians. Specter holds a particular place of dishonor in Republican minds, but he was turned out by his own most recent party of choice, the Democrats. In his place, retired admiral Rep. Joe Sestak was their choice to run for the Senate seat in November. Specter was heartily endorsed by current Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell. Asked for his best expert political opinion on why Specter lost, Rendell replied "the rain hurt." Which reminds me of a greeting card I got way back in the Sixties which said "The Democrats will surely win in November--if they let them all out of jail and it doesn't rain."

In Kentucky, the son of Rep. Ron Paul, got the nod from the Republican primary voters. Rand Paul, a libertarian (or something like that), beat out the establishment candidate and RNC choice, Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson. It wasn't a narrow win. Paul beat Grayson 59% to 35%. Paul has a habit of making outrageous statements, but at least he waited until after he had won before making an inopportune comment about the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I will tell you that I agree with him, but I'm not running for office, and voters are not law students. The Wall Street Journal refers to Paul's statement as "a rookie mistake." Democrats are already using the statement against him to paint him as a racist who wants to undo the entire Civil Rights Movement. And it's still five months until the D-Day elections.

Arkansas also had an interesting Democratic primary. Democrat Blanche Lincoln wasn't undone by the more moderate and conservative wings of her party in her run to retain her Senate seat. With the assistance of the ever more powerful SEIU (Service Employees Union, aka Thugs R Us or The Purple Avengers), the Democrats pulled to the left, and forced Lincoln into a runoff against state lieutenant governor Bill Halter. No matter which of the two wins, the Republican candidate will be running against liberalism and business as usual. Currently, state representative John Boozman, the clear Republican primary winner, leads both of the Democrats in the polls.

In a warning to Republicans who think the November elections will be an automatic repeat of the 1994 political reversal-of-fortune, Republicans lost a special election to replace the corrupt representative Democrat John Murtha, who shuffled off this mortal coil awhile back. It's not entirely a general statement on Republican candidates, but it is a warning that issues and the ability to articulate them, not momentum, will be the determining factor. Murtha's district was the only one in the entire United States which went for John Kerry in 2004 and John McCain in 2008.

Despite a strong streak of anti-Democrat sentiment in moderate/conservative districts, a Democrat with a conservative, anti-establishment agenda can win over a squishy, inarticulate Republican with bad political advisers. Democrat Mark Critz beat Republican candidate Tim Burns by running as the pro-life, pro-gun, pro-Arizona immigration law, anti-cap 'n tax, and anti-Obamapelosicare law candidate. Still, the district is registered Democrat by a ratio of two to one, so Republicans shouldn't feel too bad about the loss.


Writer X said...

It's interesting that the Democrats who won are running against the Obama agenda--at least while they're campaigning cause we know how that goes. Still, Specter's loss was the bright spot of the week. That made me smile. What a crook!

Libertarian Advocate said...

Here's a few posts I put up about Specter from May and into August of 2009. There is a delicious irony that his demise came almost a year after his party switch. The guy is a singular CREEP fully deserving of his forced retirement.

I can think of others like him but the list is way too long and probably obvious to everyone with more than a dozen functioning neurons

Libertarian Advocate said...

Ooops.. here da link:

LL said...

I sense a return to his roots in the Republican Party. Maybe Arlen will show up at Tea Party Movement rallies now waving a Gadsen Flag?

Joel Farnham said...


Celebrate Arlen's leaving with song.

On another note, John Dennis is making a run at Nancy Pelosi's seat. Most are writing him off. I don't see him winning unless the psychotropics are removed from the water there.

Overall Tuesday was pretty good for Conservatives.

Anonymous said...

WriterX: At the end, Specter reminded me of Martin Landau playing Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood. "Pull da strings, pull da strings." Only this time, the strings broke.

Anonymous said...

L.A>: Thanks for the link. Specter finally stepped on too many toes, switched parties once too often, and defied a few thousand too many voters. The Snarl is no more.

Anonymous said...

LL: I think all Specter had left was his arrogance in defying the odds. This time, the odds beat him, and I don't think we're going to be hearing much more from him, although he does look like he needs a strong cup of tea.

Anonymous said...

Joel: I've already cast my mail-in vote for John Dennis. He's quite a candidate. I just really don't think that a Republican will ever win a local election again in this town.

AndrewPrice said...

Good riddance to Specter, though I fear that Sestak will be more likely to keep the seat for the Democrats.

I see the efforts to destroy Rand Paul are already well underway by the MSM. It didn't work against his father, it won't work against him.

I agree about the warning to the GOP. As I said in my prior article on this Elective Thoughts, there are warnings to the Republicans here, though I don't think the Pennsylvania district really tells us anything pro or con for the Republicans -- the district was too blue to ever really be competitive, no matter what the pundits claimed before the election.

Anonymous said...

Andrew: So long, farewell, auf widersehen, adieu. Specter's gone, yay ! Sestak could be a formidable candidate, but he has a lot of 'splainin to do about his abrupt exit from the military. And then there's the issue of did he really get offered a chance to pay and play, or not? He's been awfully secretive about it.

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