Souter and Specter
A few quick thoughts on recent events:
- Specter switched due to polling. (obvious)
- I prefer him as a Dem than as Rep but I'd prefer a real Democrat. (nothing new here).
- If Specter isn't the key vote on cloture for several major issues (un-rigging labor law, healthcare, judges) then he will get a serious primary opponent. Perhaps Allyson Schwartz.
- He may get a decently top-tier challenge anyways from Joe Sestak.
- Sestak is a telegenic former Navy Vice Admiral and would run well statewide, but I have an inkling that we could get someone a bit more progressive.
- Whether Schwartz, Sestak or someone else, that person might sit a long time. The state is now solidly blue and trending bluer.
- Lots of Dems are pissed that Specter is getting to carryover his seniortiy.
- I suggest they give him .5 years of Dem Seniority for every year he has been in the Senate. That way, he won't get any major chairmanships ahead of Feingold, Boxer, Mikulski, etc and won't be a Senator long enough for the deal to screw young Senators. Arlen might accept the deal in order to get a prominent sub-committee chairmanship.
- Here is the seniority list of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Hatch has occasionally been very reasonable. I wonder how he will perfrom as Ranking Minority Member.
- We really, really don't want the guy who presided over the Alito and Roberts processes chairing Judiciary if Leahy swings to Approps.
- How did the Souter news impact Specter's decesion?
- Shouldn't we have extracted a deal where by he would have supported our candidates as a Republican and given a bipartisan veneer?
- Specter must have known this was coming down the pike. It wasn't much of a secret. I, for intance, am very much out of the loop, especially on SCOTUS, and heard rumors starting before pesach.