As far as Arlen Specter is concerned, he is the most powerful Senator in town, and like Homer, he will never get his comeuppance.
Specter didn't mince words when he switched to the Democratic Party at the end of April. He let everyone know that he is simply too good to stand before the voters in a competitive primary:
"I am unwilling to have my twenty-nine year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate."
So what has the newest "Democratic" Senator accomplished in his first week? Well, on the day he switched parties, it was reported that Specter told the White House, "I am a loyal Democrat." Now he says that he never said he was a loyal Democrat.
And boy oh boy is he determined to prove that he's not a loyal Democrat. He's stated his opposition to Obama's budget and his nominee to head the Office of Legal Counsel. He won't get behind Obama's health plan. He continues to oppose a key Democratic initiative to allow labor unions to have the elections of their choice. Finally, he said today that he hopes that "justice" will prevail in Minnesota and allow Norm Coleman to be declared the winner of a Senate election that Coleman clearly lost to Al Franken.
The question is, how long will Democrats in Pennsylvania continue to stand for this crap?
Perhaps not long. Joe Sestak, Congressman and retired Navy Admiral has been talking seriously against getting into the 2010 Democratic primary against Specter. Let's hope it happens.
On a related subject:
Speaking of Senators without a lot of party loyalty, there is nothing quite like the comedy stylings of Kentucky's own Jim Bunning. Bunning had some interesting thoughts today regarding Specter as well as his own party leadership:
"It is the fact that Arlen Specter is probably as selfish as our leader is in trying to survive, that’s the only way he thought he would survive in the U.S. Senate," Bunning said. "Do you know Arlen Specter will be 80, has had four bouts with cancer and he still wants to run for the U.S. Senate?" Bunning continued. "And I’m being criticized at 77 and healthy for wanting to run for the U.S. Senate by certain leadership people in my party. Give me a break."
Asked if the leadership he was referring to was (Republican Senate minority leader Mitch) McConnell, Bunning answered: "Obviously. Do you want me to spell it out for you?" He said: "Do you realize that under our dynamic leadership of our leader, we have gone from 55 and probably to 40 (Senate seats) in two election cycles, and if the tea leaves that I read are correct, we will wind up with about 36 after this election cycle. So if leadership means anything, it means you don’t lose ... approximately 19 seats in three election cycles with good leadership."
I've often said I think Bunning is senile, but darned if these aren't some pretty keen observations on his part.