Some news stories are a delight. A recent example is ex-Senator Arlen Specter’s public complaint that Obama promised to support him in his bid for re-election in 2010 if he would just vote for Obamacare. Specter voted for it, providing the crucial 60th vote. He then found that he got no support.
To add insult to injury, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had promised to give him seniority on the Senate Judiciary Committee if he switched parties. He switched. Reid then got amnesia.
First, who cares? Not the voters of Pennsylvania. He lost, 54% to 46%, which in politics is a rout.
Second, Obama is not to be trusted. Who knew?
Third, he lost his bid to be re-elected. So, who cares about his lost seniority?
Fourth, anyone who would sell his vote to Obama deserves just what Specter got.
Specter was a turncoat. He left the Republican Party in 2009. He expected kissy-kissy responses from the Democrats in the Senate. He forgot the first rule of politics as it applies to someone without clout: “You play ball with us, and we’ll smash you in the teeth with the bat.” He was a visible loser in 2009. He was looking for an umbrella in the Democratic Party. The umbrella had holes in it.
Specter laments that Obama and Vice President Biden did not do more to help him in the final days of his primary race against former Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa.), who beat him 54 percent to 46 percent in the 2010 Pennsylvania Senate Democratic primary.
Specter writes that Obama turned down a request to campaign with him in the final days of the primary, because the president’s advisers feared he would look weak if he intervened and Specter lost.
It gets even better.
The snub was made all the more painful by Obama flying over Philadelphia en route to New York City a few days before the election and then on primary day jetting over Pittsburgh to visit a factory in Youngstown, Ohio, 22 miles from the Pennsylvania border, to promote the 2009 economic stimulus law. The painful irony for Specter is that his vote for the stimulus legislation, which was instrumental to its passage, hastened his departure from the Republican Party.
Reid stripped him of all seniority. He did it in an underhanded way, which makes the story even more delightful. “Reid stripped Specter of all his seniority by passing a short resolution by unanimous consent in a nearly-empty chamber, burying him at the bottom of the Democrats’ seniority list.”
Specter found out about this is a press release.
Arlen Specter’s whining is not exactly a re-creation of Jimmy Stewart’s role in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
So, the next time you read about the latest discovery about the fine print in Obamacare, think: “Thanks, Arlen. I hope you are enjoying your retirement.”