Senator Arlen Specter (R/D) Pennsylvania decides to switch parties, and everyone on the GOP side of the political spectrum is surprised? Come on Republicans, wake up. What exactly did you expect him to do?
As early as his January 6, 2009 broadcast, Sean Hannity was threatening that Specter and others who voted for the President’s stimulus package should be driven from the party. Hannity said he feared that Specter would sell us out (meaning the GOP) on the stimulus package and added “that any Republican [Senator] who supported the package needs to be thrown out of office.”
Senator Specter said he made his decision based partly on the GOP slide to the far right, “As the Republican Party has moved farther and farther to the right, I have found myself increasingly at odds with the Republican philosophy and more in line with the philosophy of the Democratic Party.”
He also said he made it because it had become increasingly more obvious that he wasn’t going to be able to win the Republican primary in 2010. So, once again my question to the GOP propaganda ministers, Rush, Hannity, et al, still stands; what would you expect him to do?
Specter’s a senior United States Senator, with a lot of power which translates into benefits for himself and especially for his state. I suppose he should have just kept running along as a Republican, and then lose the primary? Specter may be a lot of things but he isn’t stupid.
I thought it very telling that this morning I received an e-mail message from the “alleged” head of the GOP, Michal Steele. He of course wasted no time throwing out the hate, blame and fear cards.
On the Senator’s decision to switch Steele said, “Specter claimed it was philosophical–and pointed his finger of blame at Republicans all over America for his defection to the Democrats.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t believe a word he said.”
I suspect this is not so much a case of “don’t believe” as it is a case of “won’t believe”. Steele and the propagandists won’t allow themselves to believe there is anything wrong with the Republican Party. The patient is dying and they don’t want to hear it. The patient is dying and they don’t want to think about what might be necessary to save it. How can anyone leave the party of Rush and Hannity? Why would they ever want too?
Steele continues, “Arlen Specter committed a purely political and self-serving act today. He simply believes he has a better chance of saving his political hide and his job as a Democrat. He loves the title of Senator more than he loves the party–and the principles–that elected him and nurtured him.”
So, a United States Senator’s loyalties, according to the RNC chairman are to the party? I thought they were to the state from which they were elected? To the people who voted for them? Ever watch the movie “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” Mr. Steele? I wonder which set of characters you, Rush and Hannity would be supporting? Here’s a hint, you wouldn’t be with Jimmy Stewart.
Chairman Steele then moves from the world of “I can’t believe anyone would leave the GOP” to the land of “The leftists are coming the leftists are coming”! Along these lines he said, “Arlen Specter handed Barack Obama and his band of radical leftists’ nearly absolute power in the United States Senate.”
“…his band of radical leftists”? Band meaning a group of thieves, or outlaws? Like Robin Hood’s band of merry men? So, the attempts by the GOP of spreading fear and gloom just never seem to go away.
Steele continued, “In leaving the Republican Party–and joining the Democrats–he absolutely undercut Republicans’ efforts to slow down Obama’s radical agenda through the threat of filibuster.”
“…radical agenda…”? As in “relating to or affecting the basic nature or most important features of something”? Or did you mean the more contemporary definition, “excellent, admirable, or awe-inspiring”? No, what Steele meant was the sweeping move away from the traditional GOP way of doing things. Things like torturing prisoners, wire tapping homes, deregulating financial institutions to the point of collapse, cutting taxes while starting two wars, you know, those good old fashioned American values everyone loves and admires.
“Facing defeat in Pennsylvania’s 2010 Republican primary due to his left-wing voting record, and an end to his 30 year career in the U.S. Senate, he has peddled his services–and his vote–to the leftist Obama Democrats who aim to remake America with their leftist plan”, Steele said.
See, what did I say earlier? The land of, the leftists are coming! The leftists are coming! This of course contrasted to the path of the GOP; The path that was quickly heading down a dangerous slope into fascism. Don’t know what else to call a political way of thinking that supported torture, invading other countries based on lies and deception, willingness to wire tap private citizens homes, and talk of sending military troops into private citizen’s homes without warrants. Sounds like fascism to me. But I digress.
Steele continued to attempt to work the GOP into frenzy, “His defection to the Democrat Party puts the Democrats in an almost unstoppable position to pass Obama’s destructive agenda of income redistribution, health care nationalization, and a massive expansion of entitlements.”
“…to pass Obama’s destructive agenda…?” Come on Steele, “destructive agenda”? This is second rate fear mongering at its lowest form.
Now after all of these arguments came Steele’s appeal to the patriots of the Republican Party, “You and I have a choice. Some will use Specter’s defection as an excuse to fold the tent and give up. I believe that you are not one of those people. When Benedict Arnold defected to the British, George Washington didn’t fold the tent and give up either.
“He grit his teeth more determined than ever to succeed. That’s what I’m asking you to do today.”
So, now Senator Specter is Benedict Arnold? Well I suppose that’s preferable to being Joseph Goebbels, you know what I mean here, Rush, Hannity et al, “if a lie is audacious enough and repeated enough times, it will be believed by the masses.” Or perhaps a Heinrich Himmler type of Republican Mr. Steele? You know the type. Developing ways to torture your enemies, and to justify all in the safety of the state? Of course there wouldn’t be anyone in the GOP supporting those kinds of ideas.
Of course Steele wasn’t the only Republican to go after the senator. Not long after Specter met privately with Republican senators to explain his decision, the party’s “so-called” leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell, said the switch posed a “threat to the country.”
The issue, he said, “really relates to … whether or not in the United States of America our people want the majority party to have whatever it wants, without restraint, without a check or balance.”
Well now, Senator McConnell, let’s see? American voters voted overwhelmingly (53% to 46%) to elect Barack Obama as President, and also voted in more Democrats than Republicans in both the House and Senate. I don’t know, but that appears to me to be the voice of the American people saying they want “the majority party to have whatever it wants”. As far as claiming that President Obama, and the majority party, having no restraints and no check or balance; We the People established a Constitution to provide those. It was you – the Republican Party – that for the last eight years that seemed to conveniently forgot we had any checks or balances.
In the end, the Republicans have no one to blame but themselves for losing the last general election. They have no one to blame but themselves for losing control of the Congress. So, Mr. Steele, Senator McConnell, Sean, Rush, et al, what did you expect Senator Specter would do? Did you expect him to stay in a Republican Party which is becoming more and more filled with the rhetoric of hate, block and blame? You all, helped create this political mess for your party when you allowed your spokesmen – people like Sean Hannity – to call for “…any Republican [Senator] who supported the package needs to be thrown out of office.” The GOP – like Victor Frankenstein – created monsters in talk radio, and now – just like Victor Frankenstein – you can’t control what is occurring. Your creations have become your nightmare. Your move to the far right will not pay off in additional voters, it will pay off in further losses in the Congress and an eroding base of support from the electorate.