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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Specter of Change - GOP Senator Becomes a Democrat

B. Thomas Cooper - Editor

Arlen Specter, long time Republican senator from Pennsylvania, has announced his intent to change party affiliation, bringing the Democrats closer to a much wanted, 60 seat, filibuster-proof Senate majority.

Specter, facing an uncertain future among fellow Republicans in Pennsylvania, has seen his favorability rating drop in recent polls. More than half of those Republicans polled said they preferred a change in leadership. Polls show Specter trailing in hypothetical senate primary match-ups.

Specter has been under the gun from Republicans since supporting President Barack Obama's $787 billion stimulus plan. He was one of only three Republicans who voted in support of the plan. Specter, the fifth oldest senator in Congress was first elected to the Senate in 1980, and is the senior senator from Pennsylvania.

The Democrats having been awaiting the final results of the highly contested Minnesota Senate race between former comedian Al Franken, Democrat, and Republican incumbent Norm Coleman. Franken currently holds a 225 vote lead, and is ultimately expected to win the seat. With Arlen Specter switching to the Democratic party, their long sought after filibuster-proof Senate majority may suddenly be within grasp.

B. Thomas Cooper - Editor

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