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New Deal: Specter Gets a Subcommittee Chairmanship

By Shailagh Murray
Senate Democratic leaders have reached agreement with Sen. Arlen Specter to partially restore the party switcher's status on the Judiciary Committee, by granting Specter the chairmanship of the Crime and Drugs Subcommittee.

Under the deal, which Senate Democratic aides outlined this morning, Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) would give up the gavel of the prestigious post, which holds jurisdiction over most Justice Department activities. Durbin would take over a newly restored human rights subcommittee, which was dissolved at the beginning of the current 111th Congress because none of the committee members were available to run it.

Specter would not regain his seniority on the committee, at least until after the 2010 election, aides said, but they said he is pleased with the outcome. Senate Democrats readily endorsed the proposal, aides said. As one Democratic staffer put it, "What we don't want is an angry former Republican during a Supreme Court hearing."

By Web Politics Editor  |  May 7, 2009; 10:16 AM ET
Categories:  Capitol Briefing  
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Sounds like "Leaky" Leahy wasn't too happy about this move:

Posted by: JakeD | May 7, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Specter gets a Subcomitte Chairmanship. Great! Now I just hope he gets to work to prove himself and give it up-- talking about Norman Coleman should be seated.

Because given his recent statements, I still cannot figure out if his crossing the isle is a real plus or minus for the Democrats. Just hope they wont come out of this with 'egg' on their face.

Posted by: Victoria5 | May 7, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse


Thanks for being so transparent.

You make the work of those of us who believe in the U.S. Constitution that much easier.

Here's another link for you:

Have a nice day.

Posted by: scrivener50 | May 7, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

scrivener50....Please limit your posts to your mother Russia.

Posted by: MRGB | May 7, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

I encourage all Republicans to send money to the Republican Party of Pennsylvania. It's time to get rid of Specter once and for all--this guy is like a cancer that just won't go away....

Posted by: charko825 | May 7, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Spector should be given a retirement party.

Posted by: washpost35 | May 7, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

I said this administration would be a hoot to watch - Mr. Spector is just a small skit in a running 4 year SNL...

dr. o

Posted by: ad4hk2004 | May 7, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Ahh! The Demos one again demonstrate their steadfastness! They are just like the weather,if you don't like it now just wait
until tomorrow and it will change or maybe just wait until the wind blows and see which direction to take.

Posted by: jslivesay | May 7, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Another success at negotiation by stamping feet.

Specter's blown his deal on the uncontested primary, though.

Sestak '10!

Posted by: lonquest | May 7, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Hey the dems have just adjusted their program in the realization that a repukes vote is always "For Sale". Specter is a DINO that wants his due up front.

God help him if he doesn't perform ...

Posted by: qcdude3 | May 7, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone seriously think that the Dems wouldn't cave?

Posted by: NeverLeft | May 7, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Having Specter in your caucus . . . hard to say which party is hurt or helped most. The best solution for everyone is likely to have Senator Beavis defeated in the Democratic primary in '10 and have an election between a real Republican and a real Democrat decide the issue.

Posted by: thinker11 | May 7, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

HLBeckPE wrote:
"Vietnam-era Veterans like me"


Why didn't you ship out Beck? Were you "light in your loafers?"

Posted by: helloisanyoneoutthere | May 7, 2009 10:49 AM | Report abuse



Senator Specter must attach himself to a cause greater than himself. Federal and local authorities in his home state of Pennsylvania (and throughout the nation) have funded and enabled an extra-legal mechanism that has unjustly and unconstitutionally targeted hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of innocent Americans...

...citizens tagged as dissidents, undesirables or social deviates by ideologically-driven authorities who have used federally-funded community policing and other volunteer programs to create a vigilante citizen army.

These so-called "organized community gang stalkers" use a GPS satellite tracking system to hunt down and harass "targeted" neighbors -- whose vehicles have been covertly equipped with an electronic GPS beacon unit.

This system is known law enforcement agencies nationwide. But "gang stalking" victims say that their complaints fall on deaf ears -- because, they say, authorities are providing direction and "cover" for extra-legal "vigilante justice."

Victims also allege that stalking units are equipped with injury- and illness-inducing microwave radiation "directed energy" weapons and devices that degrade the physical health of their prey -- what victims regard as torture and assault with a potentially deadly weapon.

Senator Specter is aware that Pennsylvanians are among those who seek an end to the infringement of their constitutional and civil rights by organized community vigilantes. To date, his office has done nothing on the issue.

Perhaps this is the time for Specter to re-assert his dedication to civil and human rights by helping to dismantle vigilantism disguised as community volunteerism.

OR (if links are corrupted / disabled):

Posted by: scrivener50 | May 7, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

LOL. I guess the Dems got burned by the bad publicity yesterday, accidentally showing the nasty, not to be trusted side. The human comedy continues...

Posted by: jhtlag1 | May 7, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

In related news, Democrats announced that if Republicans Olympia Snowe or Susan Collins change party affiliation, then they will be given the chairmanship of the prestigious Subcommittee on Lobsters of the Waterways and Fisheries Committee.

Posted by: hisroc | May 7, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Goodness, if Democrats in the U.S. Senate are so skeeered of a lonely, low Republican turncoat, we need to get better Democrats. Perhaps some real men with starch in their shorts. Guys who don't walk light in their loafers.

If you know what I mean.

Possibly, Vietnam-era Veterans like me. If they're any real men left in our country, that is.

Don't be skeeered now, Harry Reid.

Thanks much. HLB

Posted by: HLBeckPE | May 7, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

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