6. How much money will conservative groups spend to try to beat him?
How on earth could that possibly matter? It will be a shock if whatever whack job the Republicans nominate comes within ten points of Specter. He’s now a Democrat and a long-time incumbent in a blue state (comfy Obama win, huge rej advantage).
The era of conservative dominance is over. It lives on only in the minds of Beltway political pundits.
It could matter if Republicans burn tons of money there in a misbegotten attempt at revenge and don’t fund races that are actually winnable. Shit, I hope they do it there so we can have a puncher’s chance here in Florida.
Bear shits in woods.
It’s not a totally pointless question. Every dollar that is spent to unseat Specter is a dollar that cannot be used to win other Senate seats.
John H. Farr
Like with real estate developers and Wall Street financiers, the evolutionary niche is closing. We actually won back in the ’60s, but these things take a lot longer than people expect.
Has Halperin ever asked a non-dumb question?
Also, it should be clear that John McCain won the day.
Pundits are looking into the abyss themselves. They’re disoriented, because they’ve been nothing buy lazy sycophants. How’s that workin’ out?
Exactly. The question should be phrased, “How much money will conservative groups squander trying to unseat him?”
I would like to hope they spend eleventy billion dollars.
Is there anyone pleased by this move? I haven’t visited Wingnuttia yet, where I assume this is seen as A Very Good Thing.
DougJ what did you think of Richard Cohen’s incoherent column in your favorite paper this morning?
Dear What is left of the Republican Party,
Please spend lots and lots and lots of money trying to defeat Specter or any other democratic candidate vying for the open Pennsylvania Senate seat in the 2010 election. I love watching you guys piddle away cash on losers. It just makes my day, sends a thrill up my leg. Jeebus…. morans
The general will be no problem, but he could have trouble in the Dem primary.
Hard working sycophants (see Klein, Joe) saw what was coming and left the sinking ship SS Wingnut while there was still time to find a berth elsewhere.
David Broder and George Will on the other hand, they’ll get those deck chairs arranged in proper order as soon as they finish playing scrabble in the 1st class dining room. T – O – R – T – U – R, say does anybody have a vowl?
Jay Andrew Allen
If Sullivan’s wrap-up is a fair indicator, you would be right. Publicly, at least. The only people who seem to be lamenting this publicly are the few remaining GOP moderates who have remained immune to the sight of torches and pitchforks outside their window.
Privately, I’m sure the Republican leadership is shitting itself.
He won’t. Ed Rendell will get rid of anyone who tries to primary him.
It’s still a valid question. But the answer is most likely “very little, since even conservative think tanks are probably smart enough to realize Pat Toomey can’t defeat any Democrat and spend their money elsewhere”.
This is a double negative
It’s a good question. Much of the gains in 2008 were because the GOP simply ran out of money to compete. PA is an expensive state with two relatively expensive media markets, and they’re going up against a Democratic governor with a big ground machine. They GOP will have to blow a huge chunk of cash to win in PA. So the question is, will they bother, or will they just walk away?
Where oh where are the Santorums of yesteryear? This is the chance Republicans have been looking for to really prove what a center right nation we really are. If Specter keeps his seat, it will only be because Penn Republicans were not conservative enough.
@ThatLeftTurnInABQ: Don’t forget Peggy “Just Walk on By” Noonan
hey! how can Republicans be powerless when the Florida legislature just approved a new vanity license plate featuring Jesus Christ dying on the cross? i wonder if Brick Oven Bill plans to relocate…
so, it’s time for the Permanent Democratic Majority ?
pundit restrain thyself.
Boy, that protracted Dem primary is looking a helluva a lot better everyday.
Operation Chaos claims another victim. Thanks Rush!
The money kind-of matters, though. I predict they’ll actually dump a lot of cash into one of the most expensive states in the union in which to win a state-wide election.
Why on earth, given their tone-deaf, frankly irrational behavior ever since the Obama Landslide, would I think the GOP would do something smart and skip the race altogether?
Will the last person to leave the Republican party, please turn out the lights? Thank you.
@Martin: All the GOP pressure will be on Charlie Crist now to take FL of the Senate table. If he passes, Katie bar the door. They’ll have to throw every dime they have into keeping that seat.
If any of those super old folks on the Supreme Court want to retire (cough cough Scalia cough), now’s as a good a time as any.
Why, whatever do you mean? Pat Toomey is among the most mainstream Americans Jim DeMint knows.
Again I say – all they have left are sociopaths, the homeschooled, and the clinically insane.
Keep in mind that without the Beltway’s need for two sides on every issue, hell on pretty much every fact, the GOP would be finished. When party self-id hits the teens, Halperin, Politico and Drudge will the party’s only source of legitimacy.
The Tri-feckless Wingnut High Command of General Malkin, Field Marshall Limbaugh, and Grigori Beck, are furiously trying to peel the onion off Obama’s latest Marxist Plot for World Domination. I suspect it will have to do with hasty Flu Pandemic emergency invocations, or maybe suspicious hand shakes, and RINO defection.
Meanwhile, the walls of the Doom Room move in a little closer.
Out of Halperin’s 8 unanswered questions – only 5 I would consider dumb – or better yet moronic.
I know this is a question every normal person has probably been kickin’ around for months now, right?
OT: i don’t read the Washington Times very often, but wow, this is pathetic.
Q: What do you call the Republican Moderate Caucus?
A:The state of Maine.
Its a great day for the US and not so good for wingnuts.
Limbaugh to Specter: Take McCain And His Daughter With You
Like John Cole wrote in his previous post, is the GOP small enough to drown in a bathtub yet? Maybe a backyard kiddie pool?
Deep Thought: Maybe the GOP would be better off if they tried to cultivate the Specters that are actually remaining in their party? I dunno. Crazy talk, huh?
Edit: Interesting David Frum comment from the article linked-to above:
Quick, call C3PO on the comm-link. Maybe R2D2 can stop the garbage compactors on the ObamaDeathStar from compacting…
Agreed. The GOP needs some easy wins, and they really don’t have many lined up. The GOPs only real hope is that Obama fucks up. Unfortunately, that seems to be their admittedly only strategy right now, and hope that a few popular folks can hold on.
Olympia Snowe was especially scathing about “the Republican party leadership at the national level”. Hope they start poking her right out of the party with those pitchforks.
Also, a relative of mine involved with the Dem party in PA pointed out that they can now funnel money they would’ve spent fighting Specter into their candidates for US house. So that may pick up a few more seats from the GOP right there, as well. Whoopsie!
OT: Apparently Ahmadinejad is using “We Can!” as his campaign slogan for re-election. Conspiracy theories in 5…4…3…2…
Oh, at least as much as they spent on that ol’ game changer Tedisco.
@demkat620: but they have Jesus license plates! all is well with the FL GOP! :)
isn’t mccain also vulnerable to a primary challenge?
a scenario of him switching is probably highly unlikely, but still fun to imagine.
@cleek: One should wait at least 2 hours after eating before reading that deranged drivel
my hope is that harry reid will use arlen’s sorry ass for a few votes until 2010, and then dump him for rendell in the primaries.
the next senator from pa is going to be a democrat. the party already owns that seat, given the pa electorate.
why the hell are we giving a perfectly good democratic senatorial seat to a feckless, time-serving, unprincipled, washed-up republican hack like specter?
what does he bring to the table? what’s he got, after 2010, that we want?
fnck him. welcome him with open arms, and then dump him in the primary.
@omen: McCain’s chief primary challenger is a co-founder of the Minutemen. Last poll I saw had McCain leading by 50 or 60 points.
Obama did that ungrateful bastard McCain a tremendous favor by choosing Napolitano for DHS Secy. She was the only Dem with a legitimate shot at beating McCain in the general election.
i don’t read the Washington Times very often, but wow, this is pathetic.
i still don’t understand how republicans getting help from an insane cultist, the man who owns the washington times, hasn’t been turned into a serious liability. rev. wright has nothing on sun myung moon.
cleek that article is incredible. So according to the Washington Times Obama is the least popular president ever? Huh?
I’m more interested in whether a Democrat will run against Specter in the primary. While it’s nice to have another vote for cloture (presumably), a real Democrat would be much nicer.
For history buffs
Senate Party Switchers Of The Past Half-Century
On topic only because we’re talking about wingnuts, I actually saw a bumper sticker that said “Don’t blame me, I voted for Sarah Palin.”
As if there weren’t enough ponies today… an even better headline than “Specter joins Dems”:
Gun Owners Attack Rush Limbaugh
They want an apology from him. Heh.
sorry I have to return to the cleek linked article–didn’t Gallup just publish an overview showing how Obama is much more popular compared to previous presidents? where are they getting their info? their asses?
Be careful, y’all, is all I’m saying.
If you get too cocky or triumphalist, people are like to take you down a notch. Quiet, determined pressure on the right by implementing ideas and programs and being seen to care and to try is more important than having a circle-jerk over the problems of the Republicans.
Keep your eye in the ball.
(P.S. It is pretty awesome, though. :D)
Re punditry – Dan Balz has gotten the memo:
He’s talking about himself surely, but I think we can assume that as one of the KoolKidz, he speaks for the others.
Edit: when was it ever cool to be a Republican? I’m pretty old, and it’s always been a tell that you weren’t cool if you were a Republican.
@WMass: I’ve read that Joe Sestak was on MSNBC and said he’s taking a “wait and see” approach before deciding whether or not to run in the Dem primary for the PA Sen seat.
Yeah, Incertus hits it on the first try.
Republican dollars are getting very tiny.
Itty bitty teensy weensy Confederate dollars.
Nope, they lost because Democrats have a sixteen point rej advantage. A fact’s a fact.
Well, it’s not ideal as stimulus, but I taking a Keynesian view I suppose every little bit helps.
oh, please, please, please get this up on youtube.
WTF with Norm Coleman’s latest statement
Edit: Hmmm, blockquote broke. That’s all a quote from Benen. I especially like the Joe the plumber crack.
@WMass: Rep. Joe Sestak was the guy I believe Kos and Digby and the like were backing for the job. I wouldn’t mind seeing Specter take a great deal of heat from the left now that he’s “one of us”.
I mean, it seems kinda silly. Didn’t we just primary OUT Joe Lieberman two years ago? Why do we need a new one all of a sudden?
I still don’t think anything can match watching the FOXNOOZ morning shows the day after the 2006 elections, because they weren’t expecting to lose. All the FOXNFIENDS looked like they’d barf, especially Brian Kilmeade and that pig-nosed lady.
@anonevent: Just out of morbid curiosity, was this sighting followed by a “Don’t blame me, I crashed into your car because I was busy pondering the “I’M AN IDIOT” advertising so blatantly displayed on your bumper sticker” moment? :-D
If we can get him to say that Republicans are twirling, twirling, twirling towards freedom, I’ll get squirted out of the universe on that moment.
The crazy is all that’s left. As someone smarter said, they come pre-spoofed.
I’ll never forget this moment when I was just a dumb kid in the early 80’s, and announced proudly to my darling mom that I had just joined the Young Republicans Club at my school.
Mom replied, “Oh, sweetie. Don’t you know, there’s no such thing as a young Republican?”
God love her. :-) One of my favorite Mom Memories.
I think back in the eighties, it was all hip to be square… or something. There was a lot of stupid shit in the 80s.
Hmm… just turned to Fox and saw Glenn Beck saying “What does this big new health care program they are trying to push through have to do with eugenics?” There aren’t enough faces and palms in the world.
@JK: Shorter Norm:
I realize that I have no chance, so this is where I throw the game board into the air and storm out of the room.
It’s just Republicans, Ever Gracious, And Also Introspective As To Potentially Their Own Respective Shortcomings and Open-Minded Vis A Vis Possible Areas for Improvement And To Better Represent The Views of Their Would-Be Constituents, in Defeat.
I was mercifully out of the country and missed Max Headroom entirely.
Unfortunately, Alf was still in reruns when I got back so, yeah, I hear you there.
What is the Sun Sets in the West, Alex?
I’ll take Double downing on Insanity for $400.
Oooooo, Howard Fineman just teased the idea of Midge Rendell for the SCOTUS. I could live with that.
Average Fox News viewer: “The Eugenics? Won’t that that weird band in the ’80s with the tall chick with the real short hair?”
@Zifnab: I blame Michael J. Fox. All those people who currently don’t get that Colbert is making fun of them thought Alex P. Keaton was a role model.
@smiley: Demint is also the person that said Toomey is the most mainstream candidate ever.. That might be right if most mainstream Americans cared more about embryos and fetuses than actual children.
With that bulk, it would be hard to miss.
@Zifnab: Ever notice that many of the far-right-wing media personalities are all about the same age? Coulter, Hannity, Ingraham, Beck, at al? They all came of age politically during the reign of St. Ronnie. Same with their love of faux-country music. It starting getting big in the ’80’s too.
The Dems are happy because of the optics, not the seat itself.
there are fewer people left to talk the GOP down from teh ledge that is bat$hit crazy.
my real fear, and i mean this, is some nut taking a lot of people out with guns or explosives.
I am not easily frightened, but when your party can deny peak oil, global warming, and a potential swine flu pandemic, how hard is it to deny that your own heated rhetoric is incendiary to the point of tragedy?
I think that is the reason you will see the two Maineacs eventual leave the GOP because there will be collective guilt on their hands when the inevitable happens.
They are preaching to the unbalanced while ignoring the very real harm it will cause (again).
This supermajorty… it’s like a political wonks version of that moment in Voltron when all the lions come together to form the big robot, right?
That vulnerable little exhaust port at the end of the fortified trench turned out to actually be a missile launch tube.
Yeah, but only because they’re “not political” and completely ignorant of the situation. All they hear is “lower taxes”. They don’t seem to understand that their taxes are already being lowered. They’re a mob of useful idiots running towards the fat cat’s agenda like Hansel and Gretel running towards the witch’s gingerbread house.
And the same results are to be expected.
And can we tell them apart these days?
The Fat cats get pushed into their own oven and baked alive?
Chris “Motor Mouth” Matthews: “I think Specter is more liberal than he’s let on.”
Very funny, with the benefit of being totally true in my experience. I told my kids that I could deal with anything – drugs, bad grades, etc., but don’t ever come home either as or with a Republican or a Jesus freak. And they haven’t. And won’t.
Slightly off topic, but DougF & others might like to know that neocon-ideolog-editor Fred Hiatt is on the WaPo chat tomorrow.
Eventually. But not before Hansel and Gretel get trapped and have to figure out that they’re in a world of hurt because of their own greed. Or maybe they don’t and really do get eaten this time around.
Personally I think of Specter as a hypocrite and a snake oil salesman but for the next year and a half he will tow the line for the dems. He wants to win and orate in his later days like Strom and Byrd.
officially the dumbest thing said today by anyone:
As Glenn Thrush noted:
@Library Grape: Gee, I never did get that shot that Ford said I should.
I think it’s an interest coincidence that Bachmann and her brain have never been seen in the same place at the same time.
Robot or reptiloid?
@Library Grape: Bachmann, like Palin, is paralyzed above the neck
The answer to Halperin’s question is oodles, because Republicans are creatures of spite, not rational seekers of the best electoral return for their campaign dollars.
Score +1 for Wikipedia. They got it right… I think.
@TenguPhule: No one brings home the crazy like Bachmann.
Can’t wait to see Bachmann and Palin compete on Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader
Bachmann/Joe Barton 2012.
If Matthews, Mrs. Greenspan and Howie “my orange hair is gone” Fineman is any indication, today the Republicans have become a punch line. Chuck Todd breathlessly, almost disbelievingly, declaims Obama’s amazing popularity – it’s HIM! Not his policies!
Funny how people actually think that having an attentive, thoughtful, serious person in charge of things might poll well in crises, and that circus clowns might serve as a counter-example.
@JenJen: Luckily, he was in the next lane over, or I’m not sure what would have happened. The big problem was that there were coworkers in my car who I don’t discuss politics with who would not have found my laughing funny, so I could only enjoy it internally.
Re: “The era of conservative dominance is over.”
Has JC or other Balloon Juice posters ever done anything about Naomi Klein’s ‘Shock Doctrine?’ I did a search & couldn’t find anything but I may not know what I’m doing.
Point is, you may ‘think,’ DougJ, that it’s over but you’re ignoring/forgetting all the think tanks out there constantly churning out the shit that will bite us in the ass again eventually. They just keep filing it away & waiting for the right moment.
jake 4 that 1
All of ’em!
That would be an insult to 5th graders.
Chris Matthews might be able to face them on even terms.
J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford
What about Tom Ridge?
Lieberman is still a wild card. He’s obviously at the end of his career so he could readily show his true color (red) whenever it suits him.
Specter will not be primaried by any Dem who wants to ever run for office again. Rendell was one of the major players in this little drama (along with Biden) and Rendell owns the Democratic Party in this state. Also, people seem to be under the impression that PA is some sort of very blue, very progressive place. In downtown Philadelphia, yes. In every other part of the state including the city of Pittsburgh? Not even a little bit. Your typical Western PA Democrat loves them some Blue Dogs. Why do you think both Hillary (for her manly foreign policy) and Sarah Palin were so popular here in Pennsyltucky?
The crazy is all that’s left. As someone smarter said, they come pre-spoofed.
this one has to take the cake. they found a black man to celebrate confederate memorial day.
it’s morning in america. who says the era of conservative dominance is over?
Good point. It’s getting harder and harder to echo and/or defend the batshit insane talking points of the GOP and their surrogates.
1) Fact: Torture is a war crime.
2) Fact: Waterboarding is torture.
3) Fact: Those who waterboarded have broken both, domestic and international law.
4) Walk on by.
And as ThatLeftTurninABQ pointed out, everyone is being given a chance to choose now. Joe Klein et al understand that insanity is just not a smart thing to justify. Their coming to reason gives me hope.
Earlier today I posted a comment about Specter’s news conference roiling about the social conservatives and how they lost Chafee’s seat. Pretty much he said that as a majority leader, he would have been able to push through the rest of Bush’s judicial nominees that would have helped them, if they would have just kept their mouths shut.
Specter might tow the line until the primary but anyone who has watched him for years knows that he is all about himself.
At least social conservatives are honest about their love for embryos and fetuses, Arlen Specter not so much.
What are the odds that Bachmann is just another Colbert like parody who decided to run with it when the GOP took her seriously?
Classic from the WaTimes. Ha!
It’s kind of sick, having a guy dying on your license plate. Even if it is the son of God. Why not the resurrection which is a lot more positive than the Son of God getting tortured. Bleah. Sick bastards.
@J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford: Ridge is running. Bet on it.
Good question. In fact, if the Fundies were really all about literal interpretation of the bible, they’d observe Easter in the correct way. Sealed in a cave for 3 days.
I swear, living in Pennsylvania has provided no end of political frustration for me. We have most of our Democratic politicians because of Philly. Many of them are only dems because they could never win as a Republican. So they don’t fight the Republicans. And in the center of the state, the Dems are beaten down so bad they don’t fight. We end up with 2 dems for senators, and I can’t exactly see either of them as very good Dems. arrgh
I can’t get the “attached chart” from that Moonie Times article to display. The Flash ads on that page take over IE; Firefox doesn’t display it either, and Flash wasn’t installed in it. Gallup’s website doesn’t have anything of the sort.
Another victory for the GOP:
Kathleen Sebelius confirmed as HHS Secretary
She passed on a 65-31 vote, which means some Republicans voted for her. After all the drama with Specter switching today, I’d expect those folks to get an earful from greater wingnuttia.
Alex P. Keaton, et al.
I loved growing up in the 80’s. We ended up seeing everything change. It took longer than we realized for it to really reach its nexus, and for the change to be real and practical, but I think it has arrived.
My mom took great pleasure in embarrasing us. It was surprisingly effective, her technique, by I admire yours all the more. :-)
Shawn in ShowMe
DougJ said the era of conservative dominance is over. He didn’t say a cure for stupidity has been found. Maybe if we can find a few more billion for stem cell research.
Laura W Darling
Breaking OT News: (at least for me, as per Bri Bri Williams)
It is no longer PC to call the upcoming pandemic “Swine Flu”. That is discriminatory to pigs.
Please refer to it as H1N1.
Thank you for your cooperation.
What does conservapedia say? :D
I don’t think calling the flu by it’s proper name is “PC”. H1N1 is just more accurate. It’s not as if you catch it from hanging out with pigs. Mika Brzezinski would be in an oxygen tent if you could.
@Laura W Darling:
A) Who cares whether or not it is PC?
B) H1N1 is a FAMILY of influenza viruses. On the QuikTest(R) style test, it shows up as Influenza Type A. If you’ve gotten a flu shot in the last 5 years, you’ve gotten antibodies to some H1N1 variants, but none to the particular strain that we call “Swine Flu”.
The fearless Republican leader of the Senate thinks Specter’s switcheroo is dangerous for the country.
The hypocrisy level of the wingnuts is beyond belief. I don’t see how they can listen to their own voices in their own mostly empty heads without the cognitive dissonance leaking out of their ears.
Laura W Darling
I could see Brian totally dying to make that very point but his producers kept him on a very short harness. Alas.
More Republican Reaction to Specter’s defection:
“No hard feelings. In fact, I’ve invited Senator Specter to go hunting with me.”
“Arlene who? Well it’s just like the Democrat party to hire more inspectors to pry into the lives of Real Americans.”
“During hurricane Katrina, while I was rescuing people from a lifeboat that I whittled out of a telephone pole…”
“Ever notice the way Specter’s eyes kind of tilt up at the corners? I’d say he’s a North Korean sleeper agent.”
@smiley: “I especially like the Joe the plumber crack”
Please don’t make me imagine Joe’s coin slot.
@smiley: I hate to tell Tweety this; Ridge is not as popular as Tweety thinks he is.
@JenJen: I guess I know what you mean about growing up in the ’80s, but I don’t feel so good about it. I remember being really creeped out as a kid by the way certain qualities of mean dumb bully kids seemed to be getting really popular… I mean pop culture things like Rambo, and also the way Reagan’s jingo talk came across on TV, even when it mostly went over my head. I was a nerdy kid from a lefty family so of course everything would seem that way, but I still think there was a special ugly spirit that got perfected then. It settled into a kind of dull background noise of dumbassery in the ’90s but when Bush II came around, it all seemed awfully familiar– like as the previous generation of conservatives started being replaced by people within 10 years of my age, all that ’80s know-nothing ugliness really started to shine.
Permanent until the Democrats break into five squabbling parties, as they most certainly will as soon as the Republicans stop being a threat. :-)
Pennsylvania seems to be where republicans want to stage a takeover as there’s nothing but right wing talk radio. At least on the western side of the state.