Specter changes parties -- politically motivated? Noooooo!

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    Senator Arlen Specter holds a press conference to announce that he's switching political parties from Republican to Democrat. The five-term Senator says difference of opinions with his Republican counterparts leading to his switch. Coincidentally, polls show him losing in 2010 as a Republican but winning as a Democrat.
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Hey, we're the last people in the world to ever by cynical about politics or politicians.

So it must be a sheer coincidence that Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter jumped over to the Democratic side when polls showed that he would get clobbered in next year's GOP primary.

Polls

Recommended: Politics, Elections, Decoder

There was the Rasmussen poll from last week that showed Specter trailed former Congressman Pat Toomey by 21 points in an early look at Pennsylvania’s 2010 Republican Primary. Fifty-one percent (51%) of Republican voters statewide say they’d vote for Toomey while just 30% would support Specter

Then there was last month's Quinnipiac poll which showed Specter behind Toomey, 41-27, even though 73 percent of Republicans say they didn't know enough about the challenger to form an opinion.

The Quinnipiac poll further showed Specter running more successfully as a Democrat for reelection, winning a 71-16 percent approval rating from Democrats.

And then.....Specter changed parties!?! Weird.

Coincidental

While we believe this is purely coincidental, there are others who aren't as trusting of our public servants. Like the de facto leader of the Republican Party -- Michael Steele.

"This is self-preservation in the first order. It's a cold, crass political calculation," Steele told FOX News.

Rushbo

What's the other de facto leader of the Republican party saying? You know, Rush Limbaugh. Same thing. But Rush doesn't care. He said on his program today that John McCain and his daughter Meghan should join him.

"Arlen Specter, it's not a big loss," he said. "Come on, folks. It's not a loss. What is a politician's first job? A politician's first job is to get reelected. Specter knows he's going to have trouble even winning a primary. He's going to be running against Pat Toomey again. This is about Specter's political survival."

"Take McCain with him, take McCain's daughter with him, Meghan and some others," he later said. "This is ultimately good. I mean this is winnowing out the people that end up misdefining or preventing the party from having a singular identity."

Self-preservation

Texas Senator John Cornyn said Specter's decision was the "height of political self-preservation."

"While this presents a short-term disappointment, voters next year will have a clear choice to cast their ballots for a potentially unbridled Democrat super-majority versus the system of checks-and-balances that Americans deserve," he said.

2010

How should Specter do in the senate race as a Democrat?

The assistant director of polling for Quinnipiac said it was a smart move (that is if you somehow believe it was politically motivated).

"I just can't see anything but a landslide for Specter at this point," Clay Richards told USA Today.

Twitter

Gotta love Twitter. News of Specter's move has erupted in the Twitterverse. Here's a sampling of what's being said:

CaroleCronan: Glen Beck just said that Arlen Specter is changing parties. My first thought: He's becoming a Republican?

Leviwoods: I'd say sen Arlen Specter is a man of principle... Surely he didn't swap parties because he was prob going lose as a republican, right?

joejoe90210: Senator Arlen Specter...you are now officially a traitor

davidson1227: Woot for Arlen Specter! =)

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