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How (and why) Arlen Specter lost

1. Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter's defeat at the hands of upstart Rep. Joe Sestak made him the second Senate incumbent to lose an intraparty battle in the 2010 elections -- the largest number since four incumbents fell in 1980.

Specter's loss will be endlessly examined (and then re-examined) in the days to come but, at its root, there were two main factors at work: the perils of party switching and an anti-incumbent national environment.

Party switchers almost uniformly struggle the first time they are on the ballot after the switch. The party they abandoned detests them and will do anything to try to bring about their demise while the party they joined is distrustful of both their motives and loyalties.

Specter never seemed to adequately explain to Democrats why he switched parties -- beyond the fact that it would allow him to be re-elected. Sestak brilliantly exploited Specter's seeming lack of principle on the switch with a commercial that said the incumbent's party switch was designed to "save one job...his...not yours."

Specter's inability to articulate why he had decided to go from "R" to "D" after spending nearly three decades on the GOP side was compounded by a strong sentiment among voters those in Washington aren't getting the job done and a course correction is required.

Specter, 80 years old and having spent five terms in the Senate, was a living and breathing embodiment of the traits that voters across the country seem fed up with these days. Sestak, again, brilliantly played to voters' resentments about politics-as-usual -- casting himself as a part of a "new generation" of leadership who could bring about real change.

While Specter's defeat is somewhat unique due to his party switch, the loss will have considerable implications on how incumbents -- in both parties -- run their races moving forward this fall. Running with the establishment is clearly out; outsider messages are, ironically, in.

ALSO READ: The Post's Paul Kane looks at the political life and times of Arlen Specter.

2. Overshadowed by Specter's defeat but no less important in the assessing the overall political dynamic heading into the November midterms was the surprisingly lopsided eight-point victory by Mark Critz (D), a former aide to late Rep. John Murtha (D), over businessman Tim Burns (R) in the southwestern Pennsylvania 12th district.

The Critz win marked the sixth straight victory for House Democrats in contested special elections -- a streak that dates back to 2008. (In that time, Democrats have won Illinois' 14th, Mississippi's 1st, Louisiana's 6th, New York's 20th, New York's 23rd and now Pennsylvania's 12th).

More importantly, it marked a clear rebuke of a Republican strategy aimed at nationalizing the race around President Barack Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.). While Burns and national Republicans sought ton turn the race into a proxy war, Democrats kept their message tightly focused on jobs and made the race a referendum on which candidate was better able to deliver for the district.

While Republicans can rightly note that the Democratic registration advantage in the seat made for tough sledding from the get-go, there's no getting around the fact that the 12th district is just the sort of culturally conservative territory Republicans have to win if they want to make good on their promises of taking back the House this fall. (Always worth remembering: This is THE ONLY House district in the country that went for Sen. John Kerry in 2004 and then for Sen. John McCain in 2008).

Does Critz's win mean that Democrats won't lose seats this fall? Absolutely not. But, it once again proves that candidates and campaign strategy matter and puts the burden of proof squarely on Republicans moving forward when it comes to making a case for the majority.

"Democrats faced a horrible political environment in the 12th district but fielded a better campaign with a sharper message and were able to hang on," said political analyst Charlie Cook. "It gives Democrats justification for their argument that if they field better campaigns, they can overcome a hostile, challenging political environment."

3. Ophthalmologist Rand Paul's (R) victory in Kentucky and Lt. Governor Bill Halter's (D) pushing of Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D) to a June 8 runoff didn't come as big surprises. More telling than the head-to-head battles in each state, however, is what the ballots cast reveal about voter intensity this cycle.

Paul's win wasn't just big -- it was massive. With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Paul won with 59 percent of the vote, 24 points ahead of Secretary of State Trey Grayson (R). Over 350,000 voters took part in the GOP primary -- all of them registered Republicans, given the state's closed primary system. As Post pollster Jon Cohen notes, that's the highest GOP primary turnout in at least twenty years with about one-third of registered Republicans casting ballots.

Still, registered Democrats in Kentucky outnumber registered Republicans by 573,000 -- and both state Attorney General Jack Conway, who won the Democratic nod, and Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo, who lost it, each received more votes than Paul.

In Arkansas, Lincoln won 45 percent while the anti-Lincoln vote -- Halter and D.C. Morrison took 55 percent. For an incumbent whose campaign believed they had a real chance of avoiding a June 8 runoff at the start of Tuesday, her three percent margin over Halter is not terribly encouraging.

The plus side for Lincoln? Morrison ran to the ideological right of both she and Halter, a position that could make the moderate Lincoln more likely to be on the receiving end of support from his past supporters.

4. In Oregon, John Kitzhaber (D) became the first former governor to win a party nomination for his old seat this cycle as he coasted to a primary win over former Secretary of State Bill Bradbury.

Kitzhaber, who served two terms as governor from 1996 to 2004, is one of five former governors looking to win back their seats this year. Oregon law prohibits governors from serving three consecutive terms, but it doesn't bar ex-governors from running again after leaving office.

Kitzhaber will face former Portland Trail Blazer Chris Dudley in the fall. Dudley prevailed in a nine-candidate field that included high-tech businessman Allen Alley (R), who had support from local tea party groups and ran TV ads highlighting his business experience.

The national anti-incumbent environment would seem to favor a political rookie like Dudley -- and especially one with his potential star power.

But the 6-foot-11 former NBA star has a steep climb ahead. The Oregon governor's mansion has been in Democratic hands for 24 years, and in the years since Kitzhaber left office, Oregon has trended even more toward the left. Democrats have more than a 200,000-voter registration advantage over Republicans in the state, and all statewide officials (and all but one member of the congressional delegation) are Democrats.

In a preview of a potential general election attack, Dudley subtly took aim at Kitzhaber in an early May TV ad citing Kitzhaber's 2003 remark that the state was "ungovernable." Kitzhaber, meanwhile, has gone up with ads that appear designed to deflect voters¨anti-establishment anger. "He's not running for office. He's running for Oregon," one recent ad says.

5. A few other downballot tidbits from last night's crowded primary docket:

*Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-Pa.) joined Reps. Dan Burton (R-Ind.) and (soon-to-be-former) Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) as incumbents winning their primaries with less than 50 percent of the vote this month. Kanjorski took 49 percent but wasn't seriously threatened in a three-candidate field.

*In Kentucky's 3rd district, Jeff Reetz, a candidate touted by national Republicans, finished a distant third in a four-person field with just 17 percent of the vote. That result likely means Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky.) won't face a serious re-election fight this fall.

* Rep. Tim Holden, who voted against the party's health care bill, won 66 percent to 34 percent against Sheila Dow Ford, an unknown and underfunded candidate. Holden joins Reps. Larry Kissell (D-N.C.) and Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) as Members who voted against health care and experienced similar primary results.

With Aaron Blake and Felicia Sonmez

By Chris Cillizza  |  May 19, 2010; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Joe Sestak defeats Arlen Specter, Rand Paul wins, Democrats claim victory in PA special election
Next: "Worst Week in Washington": The Nominations!

Comments

Sestak should withdraw for committing a federal crime by talking to Barry about a job!

Posted by: houston123 | May 25, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Sestak should withdraw for committing a federal crime by talking to Barry about a job!

Posted by: houston123 | May 25, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse


Spector made up the phony 'magic bullet theory' to help cover-up JFK's assassination (for threatening to stop Israel from developing nukes).

This is the preposterous idea that a "lone, mad gunman" fired a bullet which entered Kennedy's back, went upward through his throat, then shifted in mid-air, then went in and out and in and out of Gov. Connley's body, shattering bone, leaving lead fragments, then exiting in PRISTINE condition, landing on someone else's stretcher in Parkland Hospital.

He rivals Joe Lieberman in being Israel's "best friend".

America FIRST!

Posted by: virtualone3883 | May 20, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Brigade, that argument about W standing for "World" etc is so silly a hair-splitting kind of argument it could have been made by JakeD.

He was such a weasel.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Brigade, I think what I said is a true parallel. Blumenthal did indeed serve in the military at a time when many people hated the military and what the government was sending soldiers to do in Vietnam. He was expressing, overstating too, his solidarity with the soldiers who had served because he was a marine who had served (ceremonially and stateside).

In fact, today's Times article acknowledged that their source for this story has ties to the Macmahon campaign and is not disinterested when he makes his many vague and rarely documented comments about Blumenthal. AND today they had to admit that that they used an edited version of that speech, a speech in which Blumenthal earlier and very explicitly stated that he DID NOT SERVE IN Vietnam. From today's Plum Line in the Post:

"When The Times first broke the story Monday night, it included a clip of Blumenthal claiming he "served in Vietnam." But today the Associated Press unearthed a longer video showing that he earlier described himself as 'someone who served in the military during the Vietnam era in the Marine Corps.'

So why didn't The Times publish the longer vid with the quote of him getting it right? Times spokesperson Diane McNulty emailed a response, claiming the longer vid doesn't change the story"

Today's article in the Times did go to lengths to note that Blumenthal has been very attentive to Vietnam vets and their families, that he regulary involves himself personally in their issues, and that he still makes many appearances when CT. men are deployed or buried. His own son is a marine.

It seems to me that the Times has been fed an exaggerrated line of misinformation by Blumenthal's opponent and has accepted it as fact without properly researching or weighing what they were printing. And too many readers and half-listening TV watchers have accepted this less than true story as fact.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Now a test question: has Kentucky elected any Republican senators in recent memory?

==

I guess you never heard of a guy named Mitch McConnell? You know, the Minority Leader?

"The most charitable conclusion then is that I am a hopeless idiot."

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 7:29 PM

------

Oh, yes, McConnell. Hey, a fellow named Bunning, too! How amazing. And in a state where soooooo many people show up for the Democratic primary.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Now a test question: has Kentucky elected any Republican senators in recent memory?

==

I guess you never heard of a guy named Mitch McConnell? You know, the Minority Leader?

"The most charitable conclusion then is that you are a hopeless idiot."

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Specter lost because voters suspected he was a closet Palin supporter.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | May 19, 2010 3:48 PM
-------

If he'd been offered the right deal, he would have been.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Now a test question: has Kentucky elected any Republican senators in recent memory?

==

And another:

Has any state elected a Libertarian Senator? Or Representative? Or dog-catcher?

Rand Paul is a brass-bound authentic lunatic and now he has six months to fill the airwaves with unhinged libertarian junk and radicalize all but the most froth-mouthed Republicans into voting Democratic, and you can count on him to do just that.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

In an astonishing and unexpected turn of events, Brigade, you've missed the point again.

I didn't say I wanted to disarm people with legitimate needs to defend their homes. I keep a kukri near at hand and would cheerfully de-arm anyone threatening me and mine.

No, the ones I want to see disarmed are the ones with the "cold dead fingers" bumperstickers, the ones who're "pro-gun," the ones who make a fetish out of firearms. I think that's sick, and I think a lot of them have uh inadequacy issues.

And I think you have serious impulse control issues. You just can't hold back from responding to each and every single post that inspires some of this nasty snark in you. You're not very clever at it either. Deliberate incomprehension seems to be about the only dab on your palette.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Drindl at 12:41pm,
"Why Jack Conway will beat Rand Paul easily"

Drindl at 9:43am,
"And Conway got more votes than Rand Paul. So much for the teabaggers -- sound and fury signifying nothing -- by november they will be gone."

and jaxas70 at 9:29,
"although Rand Paul won the republican nomination for the Senate, he accumulated far fewer votes than the democrat (Mongiardo) who lost to Jack Conway. How do you explain that?"

Drindl and jaxas70: great minds think alike.

Rand Paul accumulated more votes than had been cast in a Republican primary in recent memory.

Now a test question: has Kentucky elected any Republican senators in recent memory?

If Conway is going to beat Paul easily, he's certainly off to an odd start, trailing badly in the polls. Maybe if Barack goes to Kentucky to campaign for him . . .

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

jaxas70 wrote,
"The NYT--a favorite whipping boy for the right--yesterday did a hit piece on Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who is running for Chris Dodd's old seat, by accusing him of precisely what Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh and practically the entire conservative wing of the GOP has done--exaggerate their allegiance to the military, doping up their Vietnam war experiences . . ."

Dick Cheney and Rush Limbaugh doping up their Vietnam war experiences? I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you're not a congenital liar---since everyone with an IQ over three knows this statement is false. You must actually believe what you wrote. The most charitable conclusion then is that you are a hopeless idiot.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Jaxas, you may want some of your money back, too. I assume you meant Thomas Hobbes who was a proponent of absolutism (as in an absolute monarchy with the king being above the law). That is not a "left" position. John Locke was a Classical Liberal who ideas were based on the notion of an all pwerful God. The selfish individual actions leading to the greater good is not Locke, it is Adam Smith.

Posted by: trep1 | May 19, 2010 9:57 AM
-------

You're throwing your pearls to swine. If Jaxas had a brain, he'd have it out playing with it.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Jack Murtha, dead even, had coattails for Critz. They loved him in the 12th because he brought home the bacon,literally.Critz will do the same. Read nothing else into this.

I actually live outside the beltway, next door to this district.

Posted by: mgre | May 19, 2010 10:00 AM
-------

"Read nothing else into this." That's what all the liberals here were saying when it looked like Burns might have a chance. After Critz won, the race suddenly took on tremendous significance for November.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:44 PM | Report abuse

mjwilstein wrote,
"commentary of the night - Chris Matthews calls Arlen Specter the "guy who puts on the woman's dress to get in the lifeboat on the Titanic""

That's good. I like that. He may be a blatant partisan who gets a thrill up his leg when he thinks of Obama, but Matthews is the one figure on MSNBC prime time who isn't an absolute fool. He actually knows what he's talking about most of the time.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Bartling, I went back and looked at the Times article. It cites one instance where Blumenthal misrepresented his service as being in Vietnam. At other times his language is ambiguous. The other references are print media who got it wrong. The fact of the matter is that Blumenthal did enlist and he did serve, even if he never left the country.

I work with a lot of vets from the Middle East, and they recognize that some guys go to the front and some guys serve in the motor pool, some in intel and some on parade. I have an older friend who was a "Remington Raider" during WWII. He was in Florida and South America for 3 years. Don't tell him he isn't a WWII Vet.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 12:11 PM
--------

You must have missed part of the third grade. The first "W" in WWII stands for "World". Florida and South America are part of the "World." If Blumenthal never left the USA, then he couldn't be a Vietnam veteran, now could he?

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

The idea that being "pro-gun" is virtuous in a nation with such a long history of assassination and massacre strikes me as just plain sick. What a morally bankrupt outlook.

The juxtaposition with "pro-life" makes it simply bizarre.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 1:00 PM
-------

I recall the late columnist Carl Rowan shared your view of guns, that is until someone attempted to break into his house. Then, lo and behold, he shot the poor bugger with an unregistered handgun he just happened to have laying around.

He defended himself by saying he wasn't giving up his gun until he could be certain all the bad guys had given up theirs. Since that's never going to happen, his view wasn't much different than the NRA. I think that's what liberals sometimes call hypocrisy.

We'll keep our guns; you can let the commies in Vietnam take care of you. I'm sure there are no criminals there---other than those running the government.

Posted by: Brigade | May 19, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

It was a referendum on the current administration.

Posted by: HughJassPhD | May 19, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

"Kitzhaber, who served two terms as governor from 1996 to 2004, is one of five former governors looking to win back their seats this year."

Actually, it was 1994-2002. He was elected in 1994 and 1998, and term-limited in 2002.

"The Critz win marked the sixth straight victory for House Democrats in contested special elections -- a streak that dates back to 2008. (In that time, Democrats have won Illinois' 14th, Mississippi's 1st, Louisiana's 6th, New York's 20th, New York's 23rd and now Pennsylvania's 12th)."

All of those, except for PA-12, were pickups of previously Republican seats. Given the hype over the potential for huge GOP gains, PA-12 was very much on the table since it had been trending away from the Democrats for some time. While we shouldn't read too much into special election results, it suggests that maybe we should hold back on the 1994-redux predictions, at least for now. (The news media seems to have forgotten that there have been other midterm elections in Democratic presidencies.)

Ironically, this weekend the GOP will likely pick up its first previously-Democratic House seat since the Bush presidency, in Hawaii. But that will probably, and rightly, be pooh-poohed as a fluke caused by a split Democratic vote.

Posted by: mkarns | May 19, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Thank God that we are rid of the spectre of a fake Democrat on the ticket in November. This should be a lesson to Washington and the DNC as well: we voters are not THAT dumb.

Posted by: alzach01 | May 19, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

To try to tie it into the president is grabbing at straws!

==

Well what do you expect? For months now Cletus has been boasting about how terrible November is going to be for The Liberals and for President {insert infantile name-mockery here}. Yesterday knocked all that eagerness into a c0cked hat.

Their lives are flashing before their eyes.

"This ain't happenin' man this ain't happenin'!"
-- Pvt. Hudson (Bill Paxton) "Aliens"

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

The LOGICAL reasons Arlyn Specter lost the election are that the man is 80 years old, for god's sake, and he's a turncoat! Not ONCE, I understand, but TWICE!! If a Congressperson doesn't know the differences in the philosophies of the parties and has no loyalties, except to his checkbook, who needs him, at ANY age!! You are a Democrat and working FOR the PEOPLE, or you are a Republican, working FOR the multi-millionaires and Corporations (AND the confused Democrat people who can be swayed by any one issue!)

To try to tie it into the president is grabbing at straws!

Posted by: Maerzie | May 19, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Good riddance!! Doesn't matter the worse of the kind if a fence jumper regardless.

Posted by: sillynewsdude | May 19, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

For people that say "Vote out the incumbent..", what is the point of just voting them out if you are going to get new people that are just as owned by the Big Pharma, Big Insurance, Big Military, Big Banks, etc. aka Wall Street Gang.

What we/you need to do is to Vote people in based on them NOT being OWNED by Big Pharma, Big Insurance, Big Military, Big Banks, etc. aka Wall Street Gang, but being real representative of the people. And to do this we need to elect people based on their positions which they will promise that they will abide by once in the office, some of which KEY positions to prove that they are agents of the People and not agents of Big Pharma, Big Insurance, Big Military, Big Banks, etc. aka Wall Street Gang are:
1- They are for Universal nationalized health care as they have in ALL European countries, Canada, Japan, China, Israel, etc
2- For really ENDING the Wars in Iraq & Afghanistan,
3- For cutting the size of the US Military budget to 50% of what it was when Soviet Union existed since the Soviet Union and its supposed threat do no exist anymore, this means cutting US Military budget to about $200Bill per year, still the largest in the world by far, and investing those SAVINGS in American people and cities.

With the above said I am glad to see that real progressive liberals like Sestak in PA beat the fake Democrats like Specter. But unless they make a promise on above Key positions, it means very little since as soon as they get into office they will start again being agents of Big Pharma, Big Insurance, Big Military, Big Banks, etc. aka Wall Street Gang whom have access to 100s of Billions of Dollars vs the Middle class that has access ONLY to their Votes.

Much more here:
http://RealNewsPost.com?n=think.34034

Posted by: RealNews1 | May 19, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Well, he switched to the Democrats when he became unpopular with Republicans. I guess he should have done some soul searching to figure out why. Instead, he sold America down the river by voting for ObamaCare.

Posted by: greg3 | May 19, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Could age be a huge factor, as well? Senator Specter is, after all, 80 years old; time to retire!

Posted by: jujones1 | May 19, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I'm going again in a few months, zouk, I'll post pictures from my house, showing the custom-made **beautiful** wrought-iron gate with my name worked into the metal.

You can scream fakery and chicanery and seek evidence of photoshopping, in hopes of proving that my house is as fake as your career.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse


bumblingberry said:

"Zero for Four. MA, NJ, VA, PA. At least chariman zero is consistent with his electoral efforts. Now who will be the next "victim" to campaign with this buffoon?

==

Noacoler replied:
"Looks like you nailed the spin for today. Good job."

I agree, and buffoon hits the nail on the head as well.
.

Posted by: Billw3 | May 19, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

And age ... his age.

Probably less ideological than might appear at first glance. Chalk it up to the "boredom factor". Specter had this "night of the living dead" quality about him after his cancer treatments. Were I a Pennsylvania voter, I suppose I might have thought to myself, "they can't kill him and he won't go away". And then, standing in my voting booth, I see on that sheet with his name and somebody else's on the same line -- somebody I don't feel I know -- and, in my moment of supreme political power I put my little black "X" inside the box beside the other candidate's name.

Comes The Revolution .... .

Posted by: hogsmile | May 19, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse


Barry campaigned for Arlen Specter, but Specter could not even win his own party's nomination. So much for the strength of Barry's endorsement.

Pick us another winner Barry.

Posted by: screwjob15 | May 19, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

I am a lawyer and always respected Spector's work on the judiciary committee. I know he's just an opportunist in switching parties, but he did good work in at least one arena, the Senate Judiciary Committee. He vetoed Kagan. I guess he can veto her again-what difference does it make now.

Posted by: Afraid4USA | May 19, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Wrong as usual (I know, this is the Washington Post, what did I expect?).

Arlen Specter lost because:

a) he had been in the Senate long enough; a newer, younger voice is needed and

b) primaries bring out the rank-and-file and Specter, not being a real Democrat, did not get the support of the Democratic base, Democratic voters wanted a real Democrat as their candidate.

Posted by: jjedif | May 19, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

"I and most of my friends chose not to vote for Arlen Specter is because he's 80 years old"
---------------

Ageist!!!!!

Posted by: HughJassPhD | May 19, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I have mixed feelings about Arlen Specter losing his bid for re-election to the Senate seat. There are way too many people who have bad feelings about him for having changed parties....which to anyone who knows is almost laughable. Arlen ran on the Republican ticket for DA in Philadelphia but was a registered democrat. He changed parties afterwards. He was unsuccessful in his attempt at a 3rd term as DA, his first attempt at the senate, and an attempt as governor. He has for the most part always been moderate in his positions. The surprise to republicans was him not supporting the Bork nomination to SCOTUS, and eliciting a vote of 'not proven' in the impeachment trial of then President Bill Clinton. He was nearly rude to Anita Hill in her testimony against the Clarence Thomas nomination for SCOTUS. I think its still puzzling to those who remember his '3rd bullet theory' pertaining to the JFK assassination. He has had quite the career. Specter lost because he didn't do well in Allegheny County which was his stronghold dating back to when he beat Pete Flaherty, former mayor of Pittsbugh. Now there's Joe Sestak, whom I admit, I don't know, however have heard a lot of good things about. The surprising thing to me is that he ran and won the house seat in the 7th district which has been a republican stronghold. Larry Williams, the republican political boss in DelCo held that seat for decades. I can't believe Sestak abandoned that seat. I'm hoping Sestak does win in November and I'm hoping Arlen campaigns with him to earn that victory.

Posted by: ewjazzed | May 19, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

An attempt at explaining why Specter lost and not one mention of Obama? How was that possibility missed? Oh wait. This is the Washington Post. Nevermind.

Posted by: HughJassPhD | May 19, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

When Kentucky's Attorney General looses the worst defeat (EVER) for a Democrat in the State of Kentucky, will the state run media finally get it that American is not buying your socialist agenda any more? Or, are you going to have to become homeless to figure it out, Chris????

Posted by: jisom
===========================================================
Tea Party conservatives generally are mis-informed, but this post is beyond getting into delusional. Maybe a conservative friend can explain whom was against whom when Paul won.

Posted by: jameschirico | May 19, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

I only have a comment for all those tea party "schmucks" out there that have such delusional hopes for November.

"Forged aboudit!!"

Posted by: Franktheliberal | May 19, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Specter lost because voters suspected he was a closet Palin supporter.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | May 19, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but there's a lot less to Arlen Specter's loss than you're making of it. The most obvious reason I and most of my friends chose not to vote for Arlen Specter is because he's 80 years old and has been in poor health for the last several years. I don't care how much medical care he gets, he's just too old. Sestak's attack ads were a complete turnoff, but he was simply the only other person on the ballot.

Posted by: ccs53 | May 19, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but there's a lot less to Arlen Specter's loss than you're making of it. The most obvious reason I and most of my friends chose not to vote for Arlen Specter is because he's 80 years old and has been in poor health for the last several years. I don't care how much medical care he gets, he's just too old. Sestak's attack ads were a complete turnoff, but he was simply the only other person on the ballot.

Posted by: ccs53 | May 19, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but there's a lot less to Arlen Specter's loss than you're making of it. The most obvious reason I and most of my friends chose not to vote for Arlen Specter is because he's 80 years old and has been in poor health for the last several years. I don't care how much medical care he gets, he's just too old. Sestak was simply the evil of two lessers.

Posted by: ccs53 | May 19, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I own property and two houses in Viet Nam and am relocating there to stay in a few years, retiring early to a nation where guns are illegal, which delights me.

Posted by: Neocoler | May 19, 2010 2:18 PM

I am beginning to think that Ped inhabits a fantasy world all her own.

1. Foreigners can't own land in Vietnam.
2. One can't retire "early" past 55.
3. the gold market is about to take a giant plunge well below 800. Poor billy goat stalker will be wiped out. How will she pay Bosley?

what with the inflation over 20% and the market in general declining, we are going to be stuck with Poor Ped until she dies alone in a fit of sanctimonious rage over smokers rights.

Posted by: bumblingberry | May 19, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Poor Lonely Ped.

Posted by: bumblingberry | May 19, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Zero for Four

MA, NJ, VA, PA

At least chariman zero is consistent with his electoral efforts.

Now who will be the next "victim" to campaign with this buffoon?

==

@DDAWD: looks like you nailed the spin for today. Good job.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Zero for Four

MA, NJ, VA, PA

At least chariman zero is consistent with his electoral efforts.

Now who will be the next "victim" to campaign with this buffoon?

Posted by: bumblingberry | May 19, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

"was the surprisingly lopsided eight-point victory by Mark Critz (D), a former aide to late Rep. John Murtha (D), over businessman Tim Burns (R) in the southwestern Pennsylvania 12th district".

Really, in the 12th district? a surprise?
lopsided with an eight point count? You must be kidding! Critz wins on a rather conservative platform in a labor city?

Posted by: HarGru | May 19, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Hi. Though I thought U.S. Senator Arlen Specter was a better choice for Pennsylvania in 2010 than U.S. Representative Joe Sestak, I think that Congressman Sestak deserves credit for waging and winning a hard-fought, spirited campaign. Congratulations, Mr. Sestak!

Posted by: atifgulab | May 19, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

moron: "Critz ran as a pro-gun, anti-abortion, pro-fiscal restraint conservative who campaigned on jobs, jobs, jobs.


In other words, the democrats did not win the race."

So which party will Critz be caucusing with, tea tard? Do tell.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | May 19, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

So far we have four high stakes races where obumbler went all in and campaigned. Va governor. Mass senate. Nj governor. Pa senate.

Anyone see a pattern? Lincoln dodged a bullet by not having mr wonderful come out and stump for her.

Paul will get a big bounce if berry ever dares set foot in ky. It is practically a sure thing. Reid is tottering. Joke bidens seat is gone. Even messiah himself is likely to hand over his seat. How obvious does it need to be for dimwit liberals?

==

Obumbler, Barry, Nappy, berry. So creative.

So immature.

Your hopes just got trashed, zouk. Go have yourself a good cry.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

spector should love the tea party and the independents that voted him out of the re-election....they saved him from becomeing a true liberal democratic moron and his wife won't have to pack him his block of cheese for lunch.
Posted by: JWx2
-------------------------------------------
Just like a Teabagger to try and take the credit for something you had nothing to do with. Sestak's win over Specter was by the same margin that Critz beat the Rethuglican in the only Partisan election last night (the only one except Specter trying to masquerade as a Democrat.) Trying to claim that the Teabaggers had anything to do with Specter losing would be the same as claiming that the Teabaggers supported Critz and was responsible for his win. Specter lose last night because Democrats are not idiots like the Teabagger Rethuglican "Can't Think For Myself" Crew. We vote our conscience and we knew that Specter was a Rethuglican in raggedy Sheep’s clothing. Salon reported immediately after the results came in that Specter’s camp was watching the returns on Fox News. No real Democrat would be caught dead watching that crap--it's idiot's news!

Posted by: Beingsensible | May 19, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

comes down to one thing : makin bacon to keep their cushy jobs.any of these pols have an interest in what is right for the country? $$$$$ talks BS walks. these people would make GW puke.

Posted by: pofinpa | May 19, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

James002, the Hawaii special election is one of those 'special' situations (i.e. plurality vote). Barring a complete surprise - if one of the Democrats can garner more votes from the other Democrat to overcome the vote splitting and to win it - the thing to watch is how the Democratic candidates fare and which comes in second and by how much because the Democratic primary for the House seat is only 4 months down the road. If Djou wins the special election, it will be interesting to see how much resources the national GOP commits to a straight, head-to-head, one Democrat, one Republican match-up in the November general. Hawaii is still a shade of blue that makes even Massachusetts look, if not red, then cyan or pinkish by comparison.

Posted by: tuber | May 19, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

I guess nobody bother to ask Pennsylvanians if age & health had anything to do with their choice to retire Senator Spector.....
Sestak is new blood, and Spector is tired blood. He should have retired honorably & gracefully.
Still, either is a better choice than looney Toomey.....

Posted by: Denswei | May 19, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

To those against socialism. News flash for you, we are a Socialist country wether you like it or not. We have hundreds of programs giving money to other countries in exchange for nothing but yet we can not assist our own American people. (A healthier society is a stronger country) those who doubt me and blame Mr. President for the so called birth of Socialims, YOU ARE WRONG. YOU FAIL. Go read and do some research with your State Government. Assisting programs were founded before OBAMA and prolly with your GOP support.
Again, our Country was left broke because of Fabricated lies in order to give a stupid contract to Halliburton in IRAQ. How many lives have we lost there just so halliburton and Croons could get their hands on oil? Oh So we could control China? Iraq is a giant waste of lives, and money.
We could have gone further and could have better ties with the East if we sat down and approached in a different way. Respect goes a long way.
Heck, The GOP always approaches problems from a bellicose standpoint. This is not the bible times that dictates we have to use our clubs to get what we want. We can achieve more with a book rather than holding a gun.

We Democrats Will hold our ground, We will Drive America Stronger, Swiftly, we Will build better ties. We Are NEW AMERICA, STRONGER. WE WILL TURN AMERICA HEALTHIER AND ECONOMICALLY STRONGER. WE STAND UNITED AND STRONG. We are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

Posted by: R3N364D3 | May 19, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

He lost because more people voted for the other guy and why he lost is because the people like the other guy better...
Can I get paid now?

Posted by: Krazijoe | May 19, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

When Kentucky's Attorney General looses the worst defeat (EVER) for a Democrat in the State of Kentucky, will the state run media finally get it that American is not buying your socialist agenda any more? Or, are you going to have to become homeless to figure it out, Chris????

Posted by: jisom | May 19, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

To those against socialism. News flash for you, we are a Socialist country wether you like it or not. We have hundreds of programs giving money to other countries in exchange for nothing but yet we can not assist our own American people. (A healthier society is a stronger country) those who doubt me and blame Mr. President for the so called birth of Socialims, YOU ARE WRONG. YOU FAIL. Go read and do some research with your State Government. Assisting programs were founded before OBAMA and prolly with your GOP support.
Again, our Country was left broke because of Fabricated lies in order to give a stupid contract to Halliburton in IRAQ. How many lives have we lost there just so halliburton and Croons could get their hands on oil? Oh So we could control China? Iraq is a giant waste of time, lives and money.
We could have gone further and could have better ties with the East if we could have ap

Posted by: R3N364D3 | May 19, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Here's my question. What is an 80 year old man with a history of cancer thinking when he asks the voters to give him another six term in office? Is he suffering delusions of immortality?

Posted by: kevinrardin | May 19, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Kudos Chris Cillizza for this clear analysis of ALL of the races yesterday, not just a few.

I have been ranting all morning about the abysmal analysis political pundits and the press in general have given on yesterday's election. Their spin of the results to fit their predictions have been transparent and lame.

Your article is a breath of fresh air. You have proven to me that not all political analysts are hacks. Thank you and keep up the great work!

Posted by: VAreader | May 19, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

37Th wrote
Get this - some US cities are now allowing NON-US CITIZENS TO VOTE


WHERE????????????

Posted by: larsonlk | May 19, 2010 2:05
PM

Looks like they will be in San Francisco

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/cityinsider/detail?entry_id=63778

Posted by: Hairistotle | May 19, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

The only thing worse than a lying republican is a democrat who tells the truth.

Posted by: lylecanterbury | May 19, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Noa has clearly never left the United States:

"The idea that being "pro-gun" is virtuous in a nation with such a long history of assassination and massacre strikes me as just plain sick. What a morally bankrupt outlook."

The ignorance of world and national history is less appauling than shocking. Beyond humorous. Borderline sad.

==

Your rebuttal boils down to "others are worse so we're fine. You don't bother to rebut the deplorable legacy of assassination and massacre in the USA, nor the role that easily available firearms play in it. How many would Seung Cho have killed if he had to use a knife? Would Hiunckly have gotten a shiv into Reagan? Would Von Brunn have been able to totter into a rain of victims?

Your response is past "sad," it's childish, the sort of argument a kid uses.

As for my travels, oh my. I've lived in Europe, I travel to Asia every year, I own property and two houses in Viet Nam and am relocating there to stay in a few years, retiring early to a nation where guns are illegal, which delights me.

You wouldn't like Viet Nam, Mike, the hammer and sickle flags flying unapologetically and proudly would give you the French Fits. Pardon me, the Freedom Fits.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

" it once again proves that candidates and campaign strategy matter "

The above was written about Critz but it applies equally well to Specter. Voters believed that Specter switched to keep his job and he never did anything to persuade them otherwise. But a good candidate with good strategy was required to drive this home to the voters and win the election. Connections and political friends will only take you so far. Voters still decide elections.

Posted by: jacobson98 | May 19, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse


chart_guy:
"The elephant in the room is Senator Specter's support of Obamacare. His party shift allowed that to pass.

The people did not want Obamacare, and it was forced upon them."

That's a nice theory. The only flaw in your logic is that Sestak also supported health care reform. So now what?

Posted by: presto668 | May 19, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Remember, vote for the Democrat, vote for the Republican, vote for the independent, just DON'T VOTE INCUMBENT!

==

Read liberal posts, read conservative posts, just DON'T READ POSTS WITH ALL CAPS AND EXCLAMATION POINTS!!

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

37Th wrote
Get this - some US cities are now allowing NON-US CITIZENS TO VOTE


WHERE????????????

Posted by: larsonlk | May 19, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

For those keeping score, there have been seven special elections for U.S. House seats since the president's inauguration 16 months ago: NY20, IL5, CA32, CA10, NY23, FL19, and PA12. Democrats have won all seven.

Regarding last nite's only Republican vs. Democratic bellwether election, not only did the only Democrat vs. Republican contest end in victory for Democrats in the nation, which was supposed to be a sign of what would happen in November, more Democrats voted in the Democratic primary than republicans in their primary. Democrat Critz won with 57,542 votes and Republican Burns with 26,024 votes. Democrat won more than 2-1 - WOW!

Democrats turned out in a large majority in virtually all of the Democratic primaries in every state, just like they will in November.

If I were voting in the senate race, I would have voted for the real Democrat also.

Posted by: SCVoter | May 19, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

There was a resounding message that was sent across America last night.

.. a message of clarity ..

A message of Pride in America.

A message of Hope in our President.

A message that those who belong to the Party of No and present no solutions, shall be denied their incumbency.

A message that Americans want Real Democrats, not party hacks.

A message that the Party of No which lead America into the ditch will NOT be the one to get America out of that ditch.

.. America Spoke ..

And the message was clear!

Posted by: WillSeattle | May 19, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

The Rand Paul victory is deliciously ironic. A silver-spoon outsider to insular Kentucky whose money came from his father's supporters, beats the local boy who raised only local money.All under the Tea Party banner. I guess it shows that the Tea Partiers really are the well-heele crowd. Do you think he'll expect Wednesdays and Fridays off to paly gold if he makes it to the senate?

Posted by: wd1214 | May 19, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

The Rand Paul victory is deliciously ironic. A silver-spoon outsider to insular Kentucky whose money came from his father's supporters, beats the local boy who raised only local money.All under the Tea Party banner. I guess it shows that the Tea Partiers really are the well-heele crowd. Do you think he'll expect Wednesdays and Fridays off to paly gold if he makes it to the senate?

Posted by: wd1214 | May 19, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

The Rand Paul victory is deliciously ironic. A silver-spoon outsider to insular Kentucky whose money came from his father's supporters, beats the local boy who raised only local money.All under the Tea Party banner. I guess it shows that the Tea Partiers really are the well-heele crowd. Do you think he'll expect Wednesdays and Fridays off to paly gold if he makes it to the senate?

Posted by: wd1214 | May 19, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Spector lost because the he switched to a party that has comitted POLITICAL SUCIDE over healthcare, outrageous spending, uncontrolled immigration, and general lack of understanding of how our Free Enterprise system works.

Thus, they have screwed everything up in a number of areas stretching back to the 1990's with FannyMae, and continuing with TARP and Healthcare. George Bush made a number of serious policy errors with all this too, so I'm not giving him a free pass - I think you'll find a number of incumbant Republicans biting the dust too.

Posted by: charliebarrett | May 19, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I am one of the people who caused Specter to lose to Sestak: an Allegheny County Democrat. I strongly support Obama, and I appreciate Specter's support of health care reform and other Obama initiatives since he became a Democrat. I am not "angry at Washington" though I am angry at Congressional Democrats, whose infighting created this climate. My vote was not an "anti-incumbent" vote; but it was an "anti-this-incumbent" vote. In the end, it was purely defensive: I think Sestak has a better chance against the arch-conservative Toomey. And few pundits have mentioned the fact that Specter is 80 years old and has had two recent bouts with cancer. That definitely influenced my vote. The man really should retire.

Posted by: wrt1 | May 19, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

If i hear one more Tea Party Twit calling for term limits.....

There was the entire class of "94" elected with term limits as a clause in the so called Contract with America. it as well as most of the clauses were conveniently forgotten, what a surprise.
It was never discussed, no bill was ever filed, the issue was never even debated after the 1994 election.
For 12 years they controlled Congress and term limits fell completely off the radar until now.

Term limits are only now a topic of discussion for the Republicans as they are out of power, they conveniently forget the subject while in power.
There is a old saying about power corrupts??
Hypocrites....

Posted by: NHEngineer | May 19, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Look, it's obvious Specter lost because he followed Obama to the political grave. You see in late 2008 and early 2009 Obama was a hero. A hero not for doing anything useful but for convincing stupid people that he's going to change the world with his phony teleprompter speeches and his pathetic fainting audiences.

But now, in 2010, hard working people are beginning to see what an empty suit, do nothing, pile of socialist crap that this man is and so the people who associate with this dictator wannabe are losing elections.

"Change You Can Believe In" is now becoming "Election Loses You Can Believe In".

Posted by: emmitfitzhume | May 19, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Oh My Chris Cillizza ! .......Thank You ! ....... Thank You !...... Thank You For Saying ..... " More importantly, it marked a clear rebuke of a Republican strategy aimed at nationalizing the race around President Barack Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.). " ....... PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE keeping saying that and similar statements Chris .. Shout it from the Roof Tops !! ....... Right Up to the November Elections !!....... The LOUDER you say it ....... the MORE OFTEN you say it, puts this Country Oh So Much Closer to once again having a Freedom-Loving Electorate THROWING off the chains of those who LOVE a Big, Free Spending, Socialst-Style Government and who have purposely put this Country on the road to total and complete fiscal failure, bankruptcy and ultimately, Third World Fiscal status Go CHRIS GO !!!

Posted by: delawarejack | May 19, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

We are concerned with 1) rising debt, 2)crony capitalism resulting in unbridled earmarks, poor Wall St. regulation & the exportation of jobs, 3) and the lack of Politicial decency to pass Green Reform that will elminate carbon, coal, oil & nuclear pollution. (P.S. Arlen was always a Democratic Machine darling [Gov. Rendell was practically smooching him in this primary] this loss was as much a referendum on Rendell's disgusting cronyism, waste & politcs as usual. Ask Rendell about how he closed Washington Crossing The Delaware Park to the Nation's Children but had enough Money to line the pockets of Annenberg's, Lenfest's, Comcast's & Pew's "Barnes On The Parkway" Bridge To Nowhere Fiasco in Phillty.)

Posted by: BernhardtMonk | May 19, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Billw3


Get this - some US cities are now allowing NON-US CITIZENS TO VOTE

They say it is only in local elections - but the truth is once someone is voting in the local elections, they can vote in State and Federal elections.

In fact, one basis for voting in FEDERAL elections is the qualifications for voting for the lower house of a State Legislature.


ANYWAY - THE DEMOCRATS DO NOT EVEN WANT TO WAIT UNTIL THE ILLEGAL ALIENS BECOME CITIZENS TO ALLOW THEM TO VOTE.

THE DEMOCRATS WANT THEM TO VOTE RIGHT AWAY - WHILE THEY ARE STILL NOT CITIZENS.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Hey, wait till May 22 (just 3 more days), when the Republican, Charles Djou wins the special election for the House in Obama's back yard, Honolulu, Hawaii. The Democrats just don't get it, and the media must stop protecting this one-term, arrogant president. He and his czars don't care one bit about our individual freedoms, and people are going to continue to show their displeasure at the polls, all the way through this November and again in November 2012.

Posted by: James002 | May 19, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Hey, folks that think the Tea Party will fragment the Republican Party. It isn't going to happen. A majority of Tea Party supporters are backing the more conservative choices in the primaries. When the general election comes, those same Tea Party members, myself included, will almost certainly be voting for the Republican candidate over the Democratic candidate in the general election. I say almost certainly because we'll be choosing our candidates on their own merits, not by the little letter next to their name. If the Democratic candidate has proven himself to be more conservative than the Republican candidate, then the Dems will get that vote. The chances of this happening are almost nil though. The Tea Party movement is not looking to create a third party, we're just looking to move the Republican party back to the right. If we wanted to vote for a progressive liberal candidate who thinks the people are stupid sheep who needs the government to tell them where to stand, what to eat and how to sleep we'd be voting Democrat. What we want are representatives that do the minimum necessary to keep the nation going, and otherwise keep their noses out of our business and their hands out of our pockets.

Posted by: smartestguyever | May 19, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Margaret: In the present scheme, militarily, if you are in a National Guard or Reserve Unit, you are subject to being called for active duty with your unit in a war zone. There is no draft. During WW II the Nation was at war, if you were in uniform you were supporting those in every other theatre of the war. Thus you were a war time veteran. I have friends that served in Germany during the Vietnam War, they do consider themselves, nor does the Veterans Administration, Vietnam Veterans but rather 'Vietnam Era' veterans. The Brandenburg Gate was not Dak To.

Today America's military, including Reserves and National Guard, is at war, however America is not. America is at the mall. A reinstated draft would bring the every family, not a select few, into intimate conversations at the dinner table regarding War and our governments actions.

Mr. Blumenthal used multiple deferments to avoid the draft. When he could no longer obtain a deferment he used influential friends to find a hidey spot in the reserves. He has now used photos of himself in uniform on his website, speeches, print media and other sources to advance his political ambition by portraying himself as a combat war veteran. It is despicable.

I was drafted in 1967 and earned my combat pay in 1968/69, lest you think I have no dog in this fight.

Posted by: n516tr | May 19, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Why Rand Paul will lose -- he is a creep. And this is a laugh on the baggers -- he held his speech at a country club -- LOL!

'So is Rand Paul, on a personal level, just a deeply unlikeable guy? One of the weird things about his acceptance speech last night was that he held it at the local country club -- to a members only crowd. This morning he defended the venue by saying that Tiger Woods has made golf a lot more popular. More to the point, news came out overnight that Paul refused to take Trey Grayson's concession phone call last night."

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

spector should love the tea party and the independents that voted him out of the re-election....they saved him from becomeing a true liberal democratic moron and his wife won't have to pack him his block of cheese for lunch.

Posted by: JWx2 | May 19, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Cook has a point about the messages


However the edge in registration of the Critz situation was just too great.


Burns got 13,000 democrats to vote for him -

Burns needed 19,000 democrats to cross over to vote for him.

To hang onto the democrats he did - Critz had to adopt a far-right wing agenda - this was Rockefeller Republican type stuff - this was way to the right type stuff.


I don't know how a democrat can claim much of a victory for Obama when Critz said he would NOT have supported Obamacare.

Anyway.............


On to November - the bottom line is these races had too many quirks to draw much of any conclusions - PA were primaries, but Specter was a Republicans - you had a special election in a heavily democratic district - and Kentucky is Kentucky - it really is not representative of the entire country.

So we will have to see in November.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

and the teabagger/republican rising myth continues to implode:

'The new Rasmussen poll of Arizona shows Sen. John McCain expanding his lead against his challenger in the Republican primary, former Rep. J.D. Hayworth.

The numbers: McCain 52%, Hayworth 40%.'

"The new survey of Colorado by Public Policy Polling (D) suggests that Dems are picking up steam in this state's key Senate race, with both incumbent Dem Sen. Michael Bennet taking a lead over Republican establishment favorite Jane Norton, and both Bennet and his primary challenger Andrew Romanoff leading all of the Republican contenders."

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Sestak's ad campaign appealed to and got the votes of the true blue Democrats in PA. He effectively highlighted Specter's party switch (selfish motive, party disloyalty, ghost of GWB past) and contrasting his own record with Spector's. Check out Sestak's ads on YouTube. The mainstream media picked up on the ad tying Specter to GWB but take a look the "Dear Mr. President" ad in particular. I'd bet that one probably made Obama supporters' eyes water a bit when they saw it the first time.

Posted by: tuber | May 19, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

drindl


These were primaries - so the democrats had to win.

There was ONE special election - democrat SINGULAR won.


Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Noa has clearly never left the United States:

"The idea that being "pro-gun" is virtuous in a nation with such a long history of assassination and massacre strikes me as just plain sick. What a morally bankrupt outlook."

The ignorance of world and national history is less appauling than shocking. Beyond humorous. Borderline sad.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | May 19, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

The election results mean that Americans have regressed 100 years and are dumb as dirt. The nuclear cowboys have given away their power to China and now America doesn't amount to a hill of beans, a polluted country, and a gulf full of oil. Can you say American Idiots?

Posted by: vintel7 | May 19, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

thank God for the constitution - Mark Tahiliani

Posted by: mark_tahiliani | May 19, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

'Its a referendum against Obama, Obamacare,
Obama policies and socialism."

Except Democrats won, so apparently voters are just fine with all of the above.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse


Burns got 13,000 people who voted in the democratic primary to vote for him -

Burns would have needed 19,000 democrats who voted in the democratic primary to vote for him to win.

That is against Critz getting a Net ZERO Republicans crossing over and voting for him.

So, the hurdle was just too difficult - especially when Critz started with a pro-gun, pro-abortion, pro-jobs - anti-Obama agenda.

It is interesting to not that if Critz was in office last year, Obama would be threatening him with pulling union support and other party support for NOT supporting Obamacare.


It is not pretty.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

The election results mean that Dems do not like Specter...plain and simple. Specter is a republican scoundrel and an opportunist. Time for the old bag to retire. Get a life...the guy is 80 and about ready to die any moment. Specter needs to go enjoy a little life. The only reason he is still in the senate is his legendary narcissism, which causes him to identify completely with his job and his role. Take away the job and their is only an empty shell. The election results also indicate that status quo republicans are in trouble and that the tea party is going to take away just enough of the vote to make Democrats successful in November.

Posted by: vintel7 | May 19, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Everybody seems to know why Specter and, in effect, Lincoln who faces a runoff, except the media. Now don't get me wrong, I was for both, but a significant number of voters remain riled about the Bush-created giant hole in Medicare coverage which Obama's health care reform package failed to eliminate to their satisfaction. Lincoln and Specter both supported the health package. Switching to finance, Bush bailed out Wall Street to the tune of $700 billion. Lincoln and Specter rolled over for Bush on this issue, then went on to support Obama's big-money bailouts of numerous corporations which followed. Sterling Greenwood/AspenFreePress

Posted by: AspenFreePress | May 19, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Noacoler at 1:00


Your comment at 1:00 is just too easy to respond to


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

"Does Critz's win mean that Democrats won't lost seats this fall?"

This sentence (in the 13th paragraph) raises the question: don't anybodies edit this here stuff?

Posted by: westcoast11 | May 19, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse


37thand0street ask:
"Isn't the REAL PROBLEM that so MANY MEXICANS ARE BREAKING THE LAW?"

Obama and his cohorts are buying Mexican votes with their unpatriotic and despicable actions.
.

Posted by: Billw3 | May 19, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Hey folks, these are the primaries, so R vs D isn't the important thing right now. Nothing done during the primaries will show who will win in the general.

No, the important bit RIGHT NOW is that regardless of party, the incumbent loses. No matter which party is in control of your area, make sure the guy in office RIGHT NOW is NOT the candidate running in the general election. Both sides have gotten so corrupt that they don't see a difference anymore. One party being in control just defines what sort of theft is committed. Only by seeing a whole sea of shining new faces in November will any sort of change take place.

Remember, vote for the Democrat, vote for the Republican, vote for the independent, just DON'T VOTE INCUMBENT!

Posted by: smartestguyever | May 19, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Bartling, I went back and looked at the Times article. It cites one instance where Blumenthal misrepresented his service as being in Vietnam. At other times his language is ambiguous. The other references are print media who got it wrong. The fact of the matter is that Blumenthal did enlist and he did serve, even if he never left the country.

I work with a lot of vets from the Middle East, and they recognize that some guys go to the front and some guys serve in the motor pool, some in intel and some on parade. I have an older friend who was a "Remington Raider" during WWII. He was in Florida and South America for 3 years. Don't tell him he isn't a WWII Vet.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse
-----------------------------------------
Once again you only see what you want to believe. Note the quotation marks in the New York Times article.

But Blumenthal, a Democrat, has spoken about his time in Vietnam during multiple campaign appearances around the state of Connecticut, including to a veterans group in Norwalk in 2008, when he said, "We have learned something important since the days that I served in Vietnam."

He also once lamented the treatment Vietnam veterans received when they returned from service. "I remember the taunts, the insults, sometimes even physical abuse," he told a Bridgeport rally that same year. At a rally in 2003 where family members gathered to express support for American troops overseas, Blumenthal said, "When we returned, we saw nothing like this. Let us do better by this generation of men and women."

Posted by: bartling | May 19, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

"upstart Rep. Joe Sestak made" Interesting choice of words. Are you saying the seat belonged to Spectre~?

"anti-incumbent sentiment" Media is still NOT getting it. More correctly would be an "anti-'Idiocracy' sentiment".

What used to be the Silent Majority are not longer silent. The Silent Majority is now The American Tea Party Movement; a group of Conservative Community Organizers.

When I was young, I was a liberal. Now I have grown up. The adults are taking back the government from the whiney, snotty-nosed adolescents who have been incompetently running the government for too many years~!

Posted by: happywvgal | May 19, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Don't be so quick oversimplify the reasons a PA voter would choose Sestak over Specter...speaking for two Philadelphia voters who decided on Sestak --myself deciding just yesterday after closely reviewing their positions on the issues.

Sestak has an impressive list of legislative accomplishments and a balanced grasp of the most important issues of the day --especially for someone who has only served one term in congress.

I would consider myself an independent, sick of partisan politics.

I am a registered democrat so I can participate in a primary in PA. we do not have an open primary. In philadelphia, being a registered republican would be pointless --with a 7 to 1 advantage (or something along those lines), the democratic primary is the election as far as the city is concerned.

That being said, the republican party is so far to the extreme, their leadership so out-of-touch, divisive, and contemptible that I could never imagine associating with that party. I actually voted for Specter, as a Republican, in the last election becuase I had respect for the fact that he had principles and was not afraid to speak his mind. I appreciated that he was a thorn in the side of the Bush Administration, and did not want to lose a person of clout who could effectively stand up to that evil regime.

I am a huge fan of Obama, and would vote for him 10 times if I could. This vote was not a referendum on Obama/Biden in my view, but a considered decision based on the candidates. I did not want to let politics enter the decision of who I voted for. He has accompolished a lot, despite the republicans, and despite trying to work with the republicans who presently have nothing positive to offer the country. they have excommunicated their principled members and those who think for themselves. Thank goodness there are still a few principled republicans left in the Senate, I hope they can stick around.

Sestak seems like a capable, smart, and principled candidate whom I would think have a broad appeal to voters in November and have a solid chance of defeating a non-descript, party-line republican.

Posted by: jmabbell | May 19, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Noacoler at 12:53


When you start to say something about all the sexual slurs against the tea party movement - then you can say something to someone else.

the hypocrisy of the democrats is so thick.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Its a referendum against Obama, Obamacare,
Obama policies and socialism.

Posted by: ohioan | May 19, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Americans are nothing if not unpredictable. We elect an outsider in 2008 because of the horrible mess Bush and Cheney got us into over their two terms. Then, we give the "outside" less than two years to undo all the stuff that B&C did to mess things up over eight years. A lot of people are angry about bailouts and bank chicanery, but instead of doing the work to really figure out who did what, they are content to throw the baby out with the bath water. And, it is affecting both parties. What we don't need now is more conservative foolishness. The Laffer Curve is bogus. Tax breaks for the rich do not trickle down. What we need are more gutsy legislators who ask the hard questions and make the hard decisions. Saying "no" to everything does not make one anything but an obstructor. Electing more ideologues who will block every attempt to really improve things may make some folks feel better, but it sure won't help fix the lingering problems. But, that's America. There's no IQ test for voting, and it shows!

Posted by: rob15 | May 19, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

The elephant in the room is Senator Specter's support of Obamacare. His party shift allowed that to pass.

==

it takes less embellishment to note that voters chose a 100% D over a 51% D.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

In reference to Kentucky's political demogrpahics, there are different parts of the state with high Dem registration that act very differently. Western Kentucky acts like the South, with high Dem voting registrations and frequent support for Republicans upballot. When 1st CD Rep. Ed Whitfield first won his seat in 1994, over 80% of the voters were registered Dems. Most of the minority vote in Kentucky is in the Louisville area, which is mostly Dem, but can support Republicans. Mitch McConnell got his start in Jefferson County, and former 3rd district rep Anne Northup used to get a large % of the African American vote. The eastern half of the 5th is the old 7th, almost all white but poor. The voters over there might vote Republican for President, but they rarely vote that way for any other office. I don't think that any Republican represents those areas in the state legislature, and Elliott County near the SE corner of the state is one of two counties in the nation never to have voted Republican for Presient.

Posted by: joeyjoejoe | May 19, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Specter lost for only one reason; PA Democrats, many of whom had helped elect him many times, didn't buy his switch. He had no change of position other than he saw the extremism of Toomey looming in the future, a bellwether of the tea party. We recognized Specter for what he is to Democrats: a fraud. He's really a Republican.

Posted by: Sooska | May 19, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

The idea that being "pro-gun" is virtuous in a nation with such a long history of assassination and massacre strikes me as just plain sick. What a morally bankrupt outlook.

The juxtaposition with "pro-life" makes it simply bizarre.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Small wins on either side are not landslides folks. And both parties had their moments but what seems clear to me is that people are tired of the status quo because it isn't helping the citizens of this country. Are any of us better off then we were 2 or 3 years ago? No? Maybe we should change up the House and the Senate. Politicians are like diapers and should be changed often and for the exact same reason.

As for blaming Bush for everything - come one! Didn't he blame Clinton? If you didn't buy it then, why are you buying it now?

We need new people in Washington with other ideas because they same old ones aren't working - and our lives are suffering because of it. Throw them all out and get new ones and maybe they'll care about who they represent more than what their party tells them to do.

JMHO.

Posted by: webfool | May 19, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

The elephant in the room is Senator Specter's support of Obamacare. His party shift allowed that to pass.

"Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." Thomas Jefferson, Declaration of Independence.

The people did not want Obamacare, and it was forced upon them.

Posted by: chart_guy | May 19, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Margaret: During the Vietnam War there were only two ways a healthy male could avoid service in the war zone without heading to Canada 1)deferments 2)The Reserves or National Guard. The Joke was NG didn't stand for National Guard on the soldiers dogtags it meant "not going". In most parts of the country it took influence to find a spot in the Reserves or National Guard. Mr. Blumenthal had those influential contacts and managed to find a rare opening in a local Marine reserve unit. He avoided combat. That is not his sin. Allowing the impression, supported by his "misspeaking" that he served in the war zone when he did not, is.

He is a smart ambitious public servent. I'm certain and his staff were aware of every article printed about him, but they neglected to correct articles that labled him a "Vietnam Veteran" or portrayed him as having served in the war zone. He, seemingly, use that false impression to advance his political ambitions. Voters should consider that when judging his character and fitness to represent them.

Posted by: n516tr | May 19, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Is there anything really wrong or bad about incumbent losing? Really?

Isn't this how things are suppose to work?

Posted by: RainyDayIntern | May 19, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

The hispanic groups want OPEN BORDERS - IT IS THAT SIMPLE.


Their constitutional arguments are silly - "unreasonable search and seizure."

The REASON is there are 500,000 ILLEGAL ALIENS IN ARIZONA - WHO ARE BREAKING THE LAW AND SHOULD BE SENT BACK TO MEXICO.


It is NOT UNREASONABLE to ask anyone for their license or papers.

THIS IS NOT DISCRIMINATION - it is asking for papers - no one is saying that if you are here legally, you will be denied something - that is discrimination.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Another reason for Specter's loss might have to do with the way President Obama and the Democratic Party shoved him down our throats.

==

what is it with this fellatio metaphor? Can't you find a less lurid way to say this?

Posted by: Noacoler | May 19, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

"An Arizona utility commissioner said he's willing to pull the plug on Los Angeles if the city goes through with a boycott of his state.

In a letter to the city of LA, a member of Arizona's power commission said he would ask Arizona utility companies to cut off the power supply to Los Angeles. LA gets about 25 percent of its power from Arizona."


LOL -- it's a utility -- that would be illegal. sorry.
___

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Every last incumbent needs to go. One of the main ideas behind The Constitution was we should not have a ruling class - then it was nobility. But in a few generations, the sheeple replaced nobility with a new ruling class - career politicians. Kennedy, Bush, Pelosi, Mollohan - just a few of the many "ruling" families that the sheeple keep reelecting over and over and over. They tax us and spend the money how they please - sound like nobility? They take bribes in exchange for favorable decisions (though they call it "lobbying," it is still really bribery) - sound like nobility? They pass laws covering the "common" people but exempt themselves (the latest being healthcare, but there are many more)- sound like nobility? The sheeple call them "leaders," but The Constitution says they should be "representatives.

If this generation starts voting against every incumbent - all of them regardless of party - we might have a chance to take our country back. But probably not. The sheeple are happy to be duped into the "us" vs. "them" repub/demo split (see most of the other comments here). So the same selfish scum of the "ruling class" continue to rule - because the sheeple are too stupid and lazy to think for themselves. Neither "party" is representing "The People." They are only taking care of themselves - each a greedy, selfcentered, arrogant charletan. Look at all the reports of corruption, debauchery and abuse of power - and those are only the ones who've been caught - are sheeple blind as well as stupid and lazy?

The Constitution not only gave the people protection from a ruling class, it gave them the power for a peaceful revolution - an unprecedented idea in human history. But it simply is not possible to have rights without responsibility. They go hand-in-hand. To do nothing is to give up responsibility - which is the same as giving up the associated right. Yes, it is easy to resign ourselves to the idea that there will be no perfect government - that the next one may be no better than the last - but to allow an imperfect government to go unchallenged is unforgivable. I repeat what I said earlier: The Constitution freed us from a ruling class. But we have installed another to replace it. That we've done it voluntarily is sad. But letting it continue is immoral. Every single incumbent needs to be removed in order to reset the tone of a nation where the power is centered in "The People."

Posted by: quark1 | May 19, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Why Rand paul will lose:

"Amid reports that Rand Paul teabaggers are intimidating voters in Kentucky (surprise!), this makes pretty good sense:

The likely Rand Paul victory in the Kentucky Republican primary today should give Democrats a very good chance of winning in the fall because supporters of Trey Grayson, Paul's main opponent, really don't like him.

Some primaries play out in such a way that party loyalists view several of the candidates favorably and just choose the one they like best. That was very much the case with the recent Democratic contest in North Carolina. But in Kentucky we find that Paul's supporters hate Grayson, and that even more Grayson's supporters hate Paul.

53% of likely Grayson voters for today have an unfavorable opinion of Paul to only 23% with a positive opinion of him. More importantly though just 40% of Grayson voters say they'll support Paul in the general election if he wins the Republican nomination with 43% explicitly saying they will not."


and leapin and 37, keep spinning desparately if it makes you happy. yesterday was a BIG WIN for Dems. and especially progressives, all around, and it portends very well for November.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Time to get a new keyboard, thand0. Your cap lock key seems to be stuck. Some kind of residue has likely gummed things up.

Posted by: mattintx | May 19, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

The victory of Mark Critz highlighting the failure of the GOP hype was the more interesting event of the night. There is no anger at the Democrats. Just a further shift away from the GOP as unemployment ranks swell, foreclosures pile on, and price deflation hits the streets. Electorates are reacting to their deteriorating conditions.

Posted by: julianzs | May 19, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

The Arizona law does not violate the FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS OF THE ILLEGAL ALIENS

What about the Guatemalens - how are they treated when they go to Mexico.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

On Specter's loss:
"there were two main factors to blame for it: the perils of party switching and an anti-incumbent national environment."

Wrong. Specter lost because Sestak is the better candidate against Toomey. Democratic primary voters aren't stupid.

Posted by: jgoodfri1971 | May 19, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

dindl--

As objectively as I can say this, I frankly don't care if a D or R wins, if he/she is pro-life, pro-gun, and fiscally conservative.

Call it a D or a R; I'm not sure you can objectively say anything. But if you were capable, you'd be much less enthusiastic about the 25-75 seats your "reliable" party is about to lose.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | May 19, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile on the boycott front:


An Arizona utility commissioner said he's willing to pull the plug on Los Angeles if the city goes through with a boycott of his state.

In a letter to the city of LA, a member of Arizona's power commission said he would ask Arizona utility companies to cut off the power supply to Los Angeles. LA gets about 25 percent of its power from Arizona.

___________________________________


Arizona should actually SAY TO LOS ANGELES THAT THEY ARE NOT DOING ENOUGH TO STOP THE ILLEGAL ALIENS.

So Arizona should say, that until Los Angeles starts to deal adequately with the illegal aliens in LA, Arizona will cut off its power.


Time to get tough with LA.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Why Jack Conway will beat Rand Paul easily:

"Amid reports that Rand Paul teabaggers are intimidating voters in Kentucky (surprise!), this makes pretty good sense:

The likely Rand Paul victory in the Kentucky Republican primary today should give Democrats a very good chance of winning in the fall because supporters of Trey Grayson, Paul's main opponent, really don't like him.

Some primaries play out in such a way that party loyalists view several of the candidates favorably and just choose the one they like best. That was very much the case with the recent Democratic contest in North Carolina. But in Kentucky we find that Paul's supporters hate Grayson, and that even more Grayson's supporters hate Paul.

53% of likely Grayson voters for today have an unfavorable opinion of Paul to only 23% with a positive opinion of him. More importantly though just 40% of Grayson voters say they'll support Paul in the general election if he wins the Republican nomination with 43% explicitly saying they will not."

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama says the Arizona law could be "applied in a discriminatory way."

Well, doesn't that apply to EVERY LAW there is? That is not an argument against enforcement of a law.


AND - isn't the REAL PROBLEM that so MANY MEXICANS ARE BREAKING THE LAW ?


Because if that were not the case, then there WOULD NOT BE THIS PROBLEM.

The hispanic interest groups have turned this whole issue around THE PEOPLE BREAKING THE LAW ARE THE PROBLEM - NOT THE LAW ENFORCEMENT.

It is really sickening to be honest.

Let's have EVERYONE pay their taxes - the illegal aliens, the emloyers too.


thanks !


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse


he he ....

Posted by: Billw3 | May 19, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Another reason for Specter's loss might have to do with the way President Obama and the Democratic Party shoved him down our throats. I support the President, but I still resent the way they tried to squelch all opposition to Specter. Ed Rendell came right out and suggested that Joe Sestak 'not bother to run'!

The primaries exist to give us a choice about who represents OUR Party. I really think it's wrong for the White House et. al. to be so heavy handed in endorsing a particular candidate at this point. Save it for the general election.

Posted by: MichieMich | May 19, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Don't care about why Mr. Specter is gone, just that he is. The unfortunate thing is that the T-Potty will now NEVER go away and we'll be stuck with arrogant morons like Sarah Palin FOREVER. Bye, bye American Pie.

Posted by: tdp2012 | May 19, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Another reason for Specter's loss might have to do with the way President Obama and the Democratic Party shoved him down our throats. I support the President, but I still resent the way they tried to squelch all opposition to Specter. Ed Rendell came right out and suggested that Joe Sestak 'not bother to run'!

The primaries exist to give us a choice about who represents OUR Party. I really think it's wrong for the White House et. al. to be so heavy handed in endorsing a particular candidate at this point. Save it for the general election.

Posted by: MichieMich | May 19, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

In 2012 GOODBYE BAMBI !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: yourmomscalling | May 19, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Critz ran as a pro-gun, anti-abortion, pro-fiscal restraint conservative who campaigned on jobs, jobs, jobs.

In other words, the democrats did not win the race.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

BYE BYE BENEDICT ARLEN!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: KrisinAL | May 19, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

I am not going to argue with the democrats who want to make a great victory out of PA 12. However the truth is the registrations in the district the democrats lead 2 - 1

Critz did not hold all the democratic voters - of the 22,000 democrats who did not vote for him in the primary, 13,000 of them went over to Burns.

Burns picked up ALL his Republican opponents' votes PLUS the 13,000 democrats.

These numbers might be too difficult for the democrats to understand - especially if they are intent on saying something positive about yesterday.

I think the White House is happiest about Kentucky, - because they believe they have a chance to beat Rand Paul in the fall.


Anyway - these races really do not gauge where the electorate is - most of the races were primaries - and the independents which are now overwhelmingly against Obama - did not vote for the most part.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | May 19, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Bartling, I went back and looked at the Times article. It cites one instance where Blumenthal misrepresented his service as being in Vietnam. At other times his language is ambiguous. The other references are print media who got it wrong. The fact of the matter is that Blumenthal did enlist and he did serve, even if he never left the country.

I work with a lot of vets from the Middle East, and they recognize that some guys go to the front and some guys serve in the motor pool, some in intel and some on parade. I have an older friend who was a "Remington Raider" during WWII. He was in Florida and South America for 3 years. Don't tell him he isn't a WWII Vet.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

""In the only Rep v. Dem race the Dems won. The NDP needs to see this for what it is - the Republicans can loose and the Dems can win."

Yes, a pro-life, pro-gun, anti-Obamacare (D) can win.

Power to them!

Posted by: USMC_Mike"

So we're, like, allowed to laugh at people who claim that Dems want ideological purity, right?

Posted by: DDAWD | May 19, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

reason5 seems like a nice person so I'll just say, no, Chris Dudley is not running neck and neck with Kitzhaber and the governor's election is not up for grabs.

Votes are not all counted, but in a dismal turnout (why go through the motions? everyone already knew who was going to win) about 328,000 Democrats voted yesterday and 217,000 of them voted for Kitzhaber.

But in the year of the Republican Rising! 245,000 Republicans bothered to vote and about 95,000 voted for Dudley. Everyone in Oregon knows who Chris Dudley is, so this is not a name recognition problem. His platform is the usual, rhetoric about lower taxes, more freedom, less illegal aliens, government bad, business good....zzzzzzzz. Oh, sorry, where was I?

Bottom line, Dudley is not the one who will bring Oregon back to the fine tradition of Republican leaders like McCall and Atiyeh.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

The Democrat won, Mike, and he will be a reliable Dem vote. That's all that counts. Try to spin it any way you want -- it was a rejection of the Republican.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

One dropped adjective does not a liar make.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse
---------------------------------------
You don't research very well. One ????

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdp31Hs8aCc

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/18/nyregion/18blumenthal.html

Posted by: bartling | May 19, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

"In the only Rep v. Dem race the Dems won. The NDP needs to see this for what it is - the Republicans can loose and the Dems can win."

Yes, a pro-life, pro-gun, anti-Obamacare (D) can win.

Power to them!

Posted by: USMC_Mike | May 19, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

margaret, nothing makes zoukie moonbat feel good except posting hateful spew here every two minutes -- and taking pix of 'models', of course. i'm surprised he even makes an appearance here after the election pretty much destroyed his credibility, if he had had any. but this is all his has.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

"Conservatives do not want to believe that the bank bailouts averted a financial collapse. That desire renders them vulnerable to the Paulites, who positively welcome a financial collapse as a necessary prelude to the construction of their gold-standard utopia – a fantasy world in which the fluctuations of the credit market are eliminated by the worse-than-the-disease cure of abolishing most forms of credit in the first place."

Thanks, Bondosan. Rand Paul is a genuiune radical wack job, and once people in Kentucky really get to know him, he will be so over. I hope he mentions to middle-aged folks his idea about raising the retirement age to 70.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Obunglers utter incompetence in all things economic is beginning to have an effect.

The price of oil has fallen some twenty percent in recent weeks. This is a significant sign that confidence in our future is sinking. All the spending, regulation, government takeover, printing money, bailouts, handouts, weakness and indecision is catching up.

Liberals thought we could just continue in this direction forever. Instead, we will be like Greece in an Obama minute.

Oil prices rise when the future looks bright.

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

moonbat spent the whole night looking at girlie magazines but it didn't make him feel better.

:'(

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

1. I am really kind of shocked Sestak beat Specter. Finally, Specter has fallen and a new Pa. Senator will take the reins: Toomey vs. Sestak. Toomey will definately have alot of excitement from Republicans and I think will be able to identify well with independents on fiscal issues. Sestak is liberal and will excite the liberal base. Specter has already put doubt in people's mind that Sestak is a lazy representative and they already know how many votes he has missed. They also know about his military record, and that he got discharged for killing troop morale. These things Toomey can start hitting him on as well as his liberal congressional record. Toomey starts the race the favorite, but it's going to be a good one.

2. Mark Critz is just impressive. He won that district by a comfortable margin and I give him props. Critz is flat the right candidate and he ran a great campaign to win as he did. I'm surprised, but that is impressive.

3. Paul & Conway show an anti-Washington theme in Kentucky. I think Paul is on his way to a victory in November. Also, I think Lincoln will beat out Halter next month, but US Rep. John Boozman will be the next US Senator of Arkansas.

5. I think the governor's seat is really up for grabs in Oregon. Dudley has a real shot as he has personal money and is running neck & neck against Kitzhaber. As an outsider I think Dudley can make a positive impact and has a real shot to be the next Governor of Oregon.

Posted by: reason5 | May 19, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

So far we have four high stakes races where obumbler went all in and campaigned. Va governor. Mass senate. Nj governor. Pa senate.

Anyone see a pattern? Lincoln dodged a bullet by not having mr wonderful come out and stump for her.

Paul will get a big bounce if berry ever dares set foot in ky. It is practically a sure thing. Reid is tottering. Joke bidens seat is gone. Even messiah himself is likely to hand over his seat. How obvious does it need to be for dimwit liberals?

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

From Charlie 13:

"Specter has no principles, only ambition and a sense of entitlement to that Senate seat. That's why he lost."

I think this hit it right on the head. The people have figured this out and are tired of it. This is why Brown's opponent lost in Mass. She was arrogant about her entitlement to the Kennedy seat.

In the only Rep v. Dem race the Dems won. The NDP needs to see this for what it is - the Republicans can loose and the Dems can win.

If the Chair of the Dem Party is unwilling to come out swinging then fire him.

yesterday the Tea party had a representative on the Joy B show - Joy asked her where should we cut the budget and the Tea Party person said she was not quallified to answer that question.

This moment should be played by teh Dems all over the country - an idiot has the intellegence to complain about taxes - but if you are unwilling to say how the budget should be cut them you are irresponsibly playing on emotions without regard for the consequences.

Bobby WC

Posted by: bobbywc | May 19, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

poor unemployed moonbat zouk, with his obsession with nancy pelosi.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

David Frum on Rand Paul:

"Conservatives do not want to believe that the bank bailouts averted a financial collapse. That desire renders them vulnerable to the Paulites, who positively welcome a financial collapse as a necessary prelude to the construction of their gold-standard utopia – a fantasy world in which the fluctuations of the credit market are eliminated by the worse-than-the-disease cure of abolishing most forms of credit in the first place.

In today’s Republican mood, politicians who explain practical limits are rejected as weaklings and sell-outs. When Trey Grayson explains that a Republican majority will not be able to balance the budget in a single year – or that some of the anti-drug programs funded by federal dollars are saving lives – he loses support. When Rand Paul announces that he will never vote for an unbalanced budget, today’s angry Republicans hear a man of principle not a petulant grandstander.

You can’t run a country this way of course. Nor (probably) can you win a general election. Especially not with a candidate as deservedly vulnerable as Rand Paul.

While Rand Paul has delicately edged away from his father’s most provocative statements, he still makes regular appeals to his father’s extremist voting base. Rand Paul gives interviews to 9/11 conspiracy monger Alex Jones and solicits Jones’ fans for money. Jones in turn praises Rand Paul as the “real McCoy.”

Rand Paul’s last-minute conversion to tough-on-terrorism is not very credible. He has been caught on videotape denying the threat to U.S. national security posed by an Iranian nuclear weapon.

Rand Paul makes common cause with left-wing antiwar protesters. He has repeated his father’s view that 9/11 was some kind of logical response to U.S. foreign policy.

Ultimately, Rand Paul is a walking target for Democratic negative ads in a closely divided state with a culture of commitment to national security. But right now running the country – or even winning elections – is not a top-of-mind concern for many Republicans. They are voting to send a message, and it’s no time to be fussy about the background, competence, associations, and inner convictions of the messengers."

Posted by: Bondosan | May 19, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

"Fascism, pronounced /ˈfæʃɪzəm/, is a radical and authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists seek to organize a nation on corporatist perspectives, values, and systems such as the political system and the economy. Fascism was originally founded by Italian national syndicalists in World War I who combined left-wing and right-wing political views, but gravitated to the political right in the early 1920s.Scholars consider fascism to be on the far right of the conventional left-right political spectrum."

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Pelosi: ObamaCare Is "Entrepreneurial"


Here's a terrifying peek into what passes for the minds of our collectivist rulers. According to Nasty Pelousy, one of the three most powerful people in the country, government seizure of control over the healthcare industry is "entrepreneurial," because it allows you to devote your days to strumming a guitar on the beach, secure in the knowledge that some sucker who hasn't learned better than to work for a living will be forced to pay the bills if you get sick.

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

"Fascism -- emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism. "

That would be the teabaggers now, wouldn't it?

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

sosume, thanks for the insight. It's kind of like that in Louisiana as well. I believe Dem ID outstrips Rep ID, but will frequently vote in Rs. But I think the state is one that isn't so hung up on the labels, I think Kentucky is that way as well. Every other governor here is a Democrat, we have one Dem Senator as well. The guy who is challenging Vitter, Charlie Melancon, hails from a relatively conservative district as a Democrat. Not to mention that the state went for Clinton twice. Kentucky strikes me as a similar state to Louisiana in this regard. This leads me to believe that Conway can win if he can convince voters that he is the right type of Democrat. A Kentucky Democrat. The seat is winnable the way the seats in Kansas and North Dakota are not.

I think this matchup is the most winnable for Dems. They got the more electable of the two candidates running against the less electable Republican.

Posted by: DDAWD | May 19, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

"Liberal fascists. "

ROFLOL. This loser is incredibly ignorant. If he had even a limited grasp of English he would know this is any oxymoron, a contradiction in terms. But then I guess that's why he doesn't have a job and has to stay on this board all day, posting inanity every two minutes.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

According to the voters I talked to yesterday, the issues were

- old enough to retire,
- health,
- Republican running for a Democratic office,
- support for the Iraq War, tax cuts, and other Bush initiatives.

In my mind there was no Democratic incumbent.

Posted by: stanassc | May 19, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Who likes to brainwash children into the party?

Mmmmmmm. Mmmmmmm. Mmmmmm

who wants to run God out of the public space. Who wants to control the press and tv. Who worships Dear Leader as a messiah. Who does woody Allen think would make a good fuerher?

Babble on drivl.

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Who wants to take over private industries?

Liberal fascists.

Who uses the law to favor certain races? Who appoints government officials based on race, who spends money they need to create social equality?

Liberals - aka fascists.

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

commentary of the night - Chris Matthews calls Arlen Specter the "guy who puts on the woman's dress to get in the lifeboat on the Titanic":
http://bit.ly/arncLI

Posted by: mjwilstein | May 19, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

moonbat writes
"Obama supported and backed Benedict Arlen."


Cold comfort indeed, if that's the best news you can find this AM. Not exactly the stuff that makes for a warm & fuzzy cocoon of schadenfreude.

.

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse


As usual zouk is desperately spinning this am, as he will on here all day long, with his thousand names. Around noon he will change from moonbat to -- what is it now, people? What's his afternoon name, these days? It used to be Comrade Zero until he got banned.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

thePoliticalStraycom writes
"Specter lost because people were too lazy to actually look up his voting record and didn't see the stabilizing influence he was in the Senate. If he was there, you knew there was at least one sane person present."

That's one perception. Mine is that he has been a perennial disappointment. While he often talked tough as head of the Judiciary committee, time and again, he rolled for the Bush admin. His bark was worse than his bite.

I'm not in PA & thus didn't have a vote, but I'm not sad to see him go.

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

As usual the liberal loons are desperately spinning this am. They continue to ignore base rate neglect.

Obama supported and backed Benedict Arlen. This is a direct refutation of his policies. Murthas district was two to one dem. Any movement from there is encouraging. It moved to eight points difference. Even ky rejected the ruling forces of mediocrity and easy spending get along repubs.

Any district within 5 to 8 points will decisively reject the obamabots in nov.

Posted by: Moonbat | May 19, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

sosueme - thanks for the explanation.

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Specter lost because people were too lazy to actually look up his voting record and didn't see the stabilizing influence he was in the Senate. If he was there, you knew there was at least one sane person present.
I hope their optimism pans out.
In the meantime, we all need to remember that we have the right to have reps in BOTH parties vote in favor of the people.

Posted by: ThePoliticalStraycom | May 19, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Can't disagree on Steele :)

Posted by: BobSanderson | May 19, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Specter lost because he is a Clown. Hopefully US voters everywhere are sick and tired of Clowns. Obama is the reigning "Clown Prince". Look out Clowns!!

Posted by: jimkearney19761 | May 19, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

@ddawd - bsimon1

First, I am a political junkie and an active Libertarian and Tea Party participant in Louisville Kentucky, PLUS a registered Democrat (I’ve never been a Republican…although I do play one on internet comment threads *grin*)

Cross over voting was like horse race handicapping in my former states of Wisconsin (I don’t even know if they still have open primaries there…it’s been a while) and Texas (yes, I was naturalized). The correct “show” bet can actually pay better than the winner. If you saw a potential weakness in the opposition (at whatever level was most important at the time) you’d simply state that that was your preference (Democrat or Republican) when entering the polling place. Or, if a contested candidate within your own party was most important to you, you would of course take your own party ballot and vote for that candidate.

Here in Kentucky it’s more voodoo and alchemy. You must register your party affiliation in the prior calendar year so you have to be fairly confident of YOUR own party’s picks (I was quite sure that Rand Paul would win the primary because of my association with the Tea Party and his commitment to it, so I remained a registered Democrat). My pick of Democratic candidate for Senate didn’t work they way I had hoped – there’s that voodoo that you do, so well - but I was able to influence the Democrat Mayoral race, which is EXTREMELY important as the Republican Mayoral candidate will have two chances…damn slim and none.

I hope that gives you a little insight from my perspective. Perhaps wnjone00 can offer some further insight.

Bottom line is not ALL registered Democrats in Kentucky are really Democrats.

Posted by: sosueme1 | May 19, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

The Democrats eat their own with political cannibalism. They sent a message to all Republicans: Don't ever switch over again. We don't want you. Specter also lost because Sestak isn't 80 years old like he is. It is time to put all politicians out to pasture when they get to that age.

In Arkansas, Lincoln was punished for being too moderate in a southern state. Democrats are also going through their own purification rituals like what happened to Grayson in Kentucky with Paul's win. The election to Murtha's seat proves that crime and pork pays very well.

Posted by: alance | May 19, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Specter lost because he is a Clown. Hopefully US voters everywhere are sick and tired of Clowns. Obama is the reigning "Clown Prince". Look out Clowns!!

Posted by: jimkearney19761 | May 19, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't want to be Michael Steele on any morning, or evening, or lunch time, or night, or, or, or....

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Communism is closer to anarchy on the right,

oops -- should read 'on the left'.


Socialism in actual practice here would mean that citizens - ordinary people, rather than CEOS, ran the oil companies, for instance. They would then assume the risks, set the prices and split the profits.

Capitalism means that ordinary people assume the risks, and company owners set the prices and take all the profits.

That's why US taxpayers will end up paying for the BP spill.

The company is as fast as humanly possible divvyng up its vast profits among the management so they can beat it the hell out of there before the bill comes due.

You pals, will pay for it all. And it will cost more than several wars.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Chris,

Great analysis and summary on the races yesterday. PA--12 took the wind on the Republican tsunami in 2010 crowd.

1) Specter was a mixed bag for democrats and he is right up there with Lieberman on the annoying scale for me. He unsuccessfully switched parties and ran a listless campaign. Sestak will do fine in the fall. Two words will always mark Specter for me: Anita Hill.

2) Ran Paul is really taken with himself. He did much better than his Republican party opponent but the Democrats pulled some big numbers in this election. That is at least as important news as you noted.

3) Arkansas is play for both Lincoln and the Democrats and it will be interesting to see where we are in 3 weeks.

4) AZ. continues to surprise with their passing of a 1% increase in sales tax. The original libertarian state taxes itself after going after our Mexican brothers/sisters- that is also news.

5) The anti-incumbent anti- Democratic party meme was harder to pimp today. It was much more complex, more local and more due to the selection, dynamics and campaigns run by individuals.

6) The Tea Party will be an ongoing hangover for the organized Republican party. The party of a unified NO will have further trouble saying yes to anything rationale for our nation in these tough economic times.

6) I wouldn't want to be M. Steele this morning.

Posted by: BobSanderson | May 19, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

"Republicans have no excuse to lose."


Charlie Cook on the PA 12th CD race.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Trep1, indeed, yesterday's story that Blumenthal spent a lot of time misrepresenting his military service has today become "well, once he said something."

I went to read the articles with dread, thinking that he had misrepresented his service time and again, as some posers have done. The Time's story was surprisingly threadbare and I don't think Blumenthal's political career is done. One dropped adjective does not a liar make.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

"brilliantly exploited Specter's seeming lack of principle"

Specter has no principles, only ambition and a sense of entitlement to that Senate seat. That's why he lost.

Posted by: charlie13 | May 19, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

"Look. The ideological spectrum runs from Totalitarianism on the left to Anarchy on the right."

That is totally backward. Fascism is authoritarianism on the right – Hitler and Mussolini were fascists. Communism is closer to anarchy on the right, in theory, although in practice it leans to authoritarian on the left as well [Mao].

Hitler was very far rightwing, he was a fascist. Got it now?

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Jack Murtha, dead even, had coattails for Critz. They loved him in the 12th because he brought home the bacon,literally.Critz will do the same. Read nothing else into this.

I actually live outside the beltway, next door to this district.

Posted by: mgre | May 19, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

"In Kentucky, the national Republican Party backed the wrong candidate in not one but two primaries. The Democrats managed to hold on to Rep. John Murtha's old seat in Pennsylvania. And while Sen. Arlen Specter is no longer a Republican, his defeat by Rep. Joe Sestak in the Democratic primary means the GOP nominee will face, perhaps, a much stronger opponent than the beleaguered Specter would have been.

It was a rough night for the Republicans."

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Jack Murtha, dead even, had coattails for Critz. They loved him in the 12th because he brought home the bacon,literally.Critz will do the same. Read nothing else into this.

I actually live outside the beltway, next door to this district.

Posted by: mgre | May 19, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

My father, who was involved in Pennsylvania politics from way, WAY back, remembers "Darlin Arlen" Specter as a not-very subtle opportunist. Back in the 60s, when Specter was a Dem, in a statewide election, he suddenly became a supporter of gun rights, an obvious flip flop. He traveled to all the rod and gun clubs touting his support; he lost the election but his reputation was established as an opportunist. True to form, he was more interested in his own job than principles -- still is.

Posted by: JayMagoo | May 19, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Thanx Jaxas70 and drindl ... indeed, as I have maintained over the last 18+ mos., Obama is no "socialist" than Bush was "fascist." Which is to say, only the most superficial of analysis would conclude either of those extremes. Does Obama favor worker rights (e.g. socialist ideology) over corporate cronyism? You betcha. But Bush favored a more corporate landscape and def. used war in an aggressive fashion (e.g. fascist). But Bush was no Mussolini, and Obama is no Marx.

Posted by: chris-gso | May 19, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

jjjoe brought up the laughable right wing "activist" Bill Sizemore, who actually got 12 thousand votes yesterday. This guy did more for the left in Oregon than any actual leftist in the state, of which there are very few.

The Oregon left is so tiny and disorganized its existence is politically meaningless. So why is Oregon getting more and more Blue? The Oregon Republicans have been drifting further and further to the right.

Sound familiar? In fact, Chris Dudley is the first candidate Oregon Republicans have fielded that is not further to the right than his competitors in my memory.

If they tack to the the middle, ignore the attacks of the right (in particular, the radio Rush wannabe named Lars Larson) Oregon Republicans will find many, many moderates who are frustrated with single party/public employee union rule. But these moderates will not vote for racists and TEA ideologues.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Jaxas70 wrote:
Look. The ideological spectrum runs from Totalitarianism on the left to Anarchy on the right. It boils down to a dispute over th nature of man. On the far right, John Locke rules with his addled notion that man is noble and left to his own devices will make essentially selfish decisions that lead to noble ends. On the far left is the equally addled notion of John Hobbes who quacks that man is fundamentally nasty, brutish and short and must be under the absolute control of some authority who directs his habits and harnesses his brutish efforts to a collective good.


Jaxas, you may want some of your money back, too. I assume you meant Thomas Hobbes who was a proponent of absolutism (as in an absolute monarchy with the king being above the law). That is not a "left" position. John Locke was a Classical Liberal who ideas were based on the notion of an all pwerful God. The selfish individual actions leading to the greater good is not Locke, it is Adam Smith.

Posted by: trep1 | May 19, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

koolkat, link?

Posted by: DDAWD | May 19, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

I am a bit surprised by Sestak's win, simply because he went on the air so late in the game, but good for him. He rolled the dice by giving up his House seat and going for it, and sometimes those go-for-broke moves pay off.

I find Kentucky quite fascinating. I think the Democrats have a real chance there, as they now have until November to highlight some of Paul's more peculiar positions and beliefs.

However, even if Paul wins, he'll probably make life pretty miserable for Mitch McConnell.

Let the games begin!

Posted by: Bondosan | May 19, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

ddawd asks
"bsimon, do you think primary voters are going to get out there and vote for a candidate that they aren't that interested in?"

I'd like to hear sosueme or wnjone00 answer that question. Sounds like they're saying there are other local races on the ballot that dems are interested in. If I were a political journalist/analyst I'd be digging into old data to look at such patterns. If I'm not mistaken, AR & OK have similar dynamics.

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Check out Mike Steele's laughable response to Mark Critz's big win in PA-12. The man -- Steele, not Critz -- is a certifiable joke.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | May 19, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Any schoolchild knows fascism is an extreme rightwing manifestation. This idiocy that it is left is one of the most ignorant memes of rightwing revisionist history.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Since it has come up again. Here is an editorial from todays New Haven Register about the AG.
http://www.nhregister.com/articles/2010/05/19/opinion/doc4bf2d016da23d686661536.txt

The paper maintains that he has not consistently misrepresented his service (or lack of) and this is not a liberal paper.

Posted by: trep1 | May 19, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

"For some posters: "Specter" is the U.S. Senator, "Spector" is the record producer convicted of second degree murder."

And Spectre is the villanous organization in Bond films.

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

MarkandBeth92, I don't knbow where you got your political education but, you should be demanding your money back if that silly statement about total government and no government both being "left". That is really stupid.

Look. The ideological spectrum runs from Totalitarianism on the left to Anarchy on the right. It boils down to a dispute over th nature of man. On the far right, John Locke rules with his addled notion that man is noble and left to his own devices will make essentially selfish decisions that lead to noble ends. On the far left is the equally addled notion of John Hobbes who quacks that man is fundamentally nasty, brutish and short and must be under the absolute control of some authority who directs his habits and harnesses his brutish efforts to a collective good.

Fortunately, society has evolved beyond these oversimplified views of the nature of man. Nuance fills the void between the two poles as always and we end up somewhere in the middle between these tow unserviceable views.

How does all of this fit in with what is happening right now. Well, from time to time. we wobble between these tow poles sometimes adopting a more collective sentiment. If we go too far in that direction, we get an angry reaction form those forces who fear that individual expression is threatened, so we wobble back in that direction. And again, oif we sray too far into a realm where there is virtually no controls on the individual, we get an angry reaction to that.

At some point in all of this drunken wobbling, society settles on a happy medium. At the moment, we are in a major philosophical debate about where that medium is. I suspect that after 2012, we will have settled the argument for a while at least.

Posted by: jaxas70 | May 19, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

bsimon, do you think primary voters are going to get out there and vote for a candidate that they aren't that interested in? I wonder if there isn't some real motivation among the Dems. It's a primary for a midterm. Perhaps there's something the press is missing. On the R side, you have a teabagger vs an entrenched establishment guy. Neither of those sits well with the general population.

And Conway has been running close to Paul in GE polling up to this point. I'm sure that the voter models don't have Dems outvoting the Rs by 60%. If this comes to fruition in the actual election day, it could be a long night for Paul.

Posted by: DDAWD | May 19, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

The rightwing spin out there is hilarious. Democrats won this in a big way and they will win similarly in November. Deal with it.

Specter lost because Sestak ran a better race.

And Conway got more votes than Rand Paul. So much for the teabaggers -- sound and fury signifying nothing -- by november they will be gone.

Posted by: drindl | May 19, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

As you know, Aristotle talked about politics over two thousand years ago, in essays which today would surely have been, his blog.

"The mistake lies in the beginning. As the proverb says, "Well begun is half done," so an error done at the beginning, though itself very trivial, is proportionately half the whole affair."

He was talking about political upheaval. The Republicans made a bad mistake embracing the TEA people, trying to co-opt them. It will not be easily undone.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

markandbeth92:

Fascism ... is a radical and authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists seek to organize a nation on corporatist perspectives, values, and systems such as the political system and the economy ... Scholars generally consider fascism to be on the far right of the conventional left-right political spectrum.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism

Socialism is a political philosophy that encompasses various theories of economic organization based on either public or direct worker ownership and administration of the means of production and allocation of resources ... Socialists generally share the view that capitalism unfairly concentrates power and wealth among a small segment of society that controls capital and derives its wealth through a system of exploitation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

Posted by: chris-gso | May 19, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

For some posters: "Specter" is the U.S. Senator, "Spector" is the record producer convicted of second degree murder. Different folks (fill in your own jokes at this point). Specter would have lost the primary regardless of any anti-incumbent mood, asking voters of a party he'd campaigned against for years to choose him as their party's nominee. I wonder how many of the people winning yesterday will be voted out next time because they are incumbents. It will be interesting to hear how Paul's views on the Iraq war and marijuana go over in the general election, when establishment Republicans will publicly back him against the Dem candidate.

Posted by: Sutter | May 19, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

For some posters: "Specter" is the U.S. Senator, "Spector" is the record producer convicted of second degree murder. Different folks (fill in your own jokes at this point). Specter would have lost the primary regardless of any anti-incumbent mood, asking voters of a party he'd campaigned against for years to choose him as their party's nominee. I wonder how many of the people winning yesterday will be voted out next time because they are incumbents. It will be interesting to hear how Paul's views on the Iraq war and marijuana go over in the general election, when establishment Republicans will publicly back him against the Dem candidate.

Posted by: Sutter | May 19, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

wnjone00 writes
"Regarding Paul, of course he garnered fewer votes than Conway or Mongiardo--you said yourself that Kentucky has 573,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans. ... everyone familiar with Kentucky politics knows that Kentuckians are frequently registered Democrat while voting Republican in national races"


wnjone00, thanks for the reminder about the KY political environment. Do you think voters who are registered D but intend to vote R in the general election voted for the stronger or weaker D candidate in the primary? i.e. Are they thinking strategically, that "I'm voting for Paul in Nov & want a weak Dem opponent" or are they hedging their bet, thinking "I'm voting for Paul, but in case he loses, I want the least bad Dem as an alternative."

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 19, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Thank you, wnjone00, for explaining the Democrat vote count thingy to all that don't reside in Kentucky.

Don't read too much into it, sports fans, as this is a closed primary state and if you plan to influence LOCAL elections you'd better be a registered Democrat. I, a fervent Rand Paul supporter and Tea Party participant, represent ONE of those Democrat votes you are counting.

Get it?

Posted by: sosueme1 | May 19, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Arlan Sphincter says what?

Posted by: pgr88 | May 19, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Specter spent five terms maintaining status quo. He did nothing of any significant meaning to warrant keeping his job.
It's really quite simple - He was fired because he didn't do his job.
Posted by: asmith1
-----

Absolutely not true. He delivered big time for Pennsylvania through the years. Particularly in health related areas and job creation. He has a great reputation for working with state government of both parties - a big reason why Rendell was in his camp. I don't cry over his loss, but he's been a good Senator.

Posted by: tfspa | May 19, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Chris-

Your analysis about Critz's win is error. In the General Election Jack Murtha won by 16.2% of the voters.

When you only win by 8%, about 18 months later, it shows a steady erosion of the Democrats voting base. It is far from being lop-sided.

You and the rest of the "spin-masters" keep telling Emperor Obonehead that he has nothing to worry about.

We love you journalists for such spin, since it makes us Conservatives even tougher and more tenacious.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | May 19, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Chris-

Your analysis about Critz's win is error. In the General Election Jack Murtha won by 16.2% of the voters.

When you only win by 8%, about 18 months later, it shows a steady erosion of the Democrats voting base. It is far from being lop-sided.

You and the rest of the "spin-masters" keep telling Emperor Obonehead that he has noting to worry about.

We love you journalists for such spin, since it makes us Conservatives even tougher and more tenacious.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | May 19, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

The breathless, eyebulging tea party supporters ought to be troubled by the fact that although Rand Paul won the republican nomination for the Senate, he accumulated far fewer votes than the democrat (Mongiardo) who lost to Jack Conway. How do you explain that?

As is typical for the mainstream media, they are gushing over Rand Paul as though he just rode into Washington DC on the back of a white donkey to kick out the moneychangers in the temple. But the truth is that Paul now has to either moderate his views in the face of a general electorate that worries about some of his extremist right wing views--thus alienating that right wing tea party base--or continue to peddle extremist, unworkable, tea party nostrums that will gag the American people when they actually hear them.

Posted by: jaxas70 | May 19, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

No suspense here. Specter lost because he is a certifiable fool. End of story.

Posted by: forgetthis | May 19, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

When a five term Senator switches parties solely so he can keep his seat, it's because he is a two faced weasel. I could have told you this for free and I didn't even go to Georgetown, Chris.

Posted by: biffgrifftheoneandonly | May 19, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Let me get this straight!!!!
Dr Rand Paul (SON OF DR RON PAUL), advances and Arlan Specter looses because he switched from Republican to Democratic Party?
And yet you morrons had John McCain and Sarah Palin as your presidential candidates aganist Obama and Biden. It's nice to see Republicans admiting their mistakes and bowing to Dr Ron Paul revolution, now all we have to hear is the truth about Iraq and Afghanistan and you can have my vote, because I will beleive that you have learned what people want and that you really care for the country.

Posted by: BOBSTERII | May 19, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Actually, facist and socialist are not polar opposites. The real political spectrum runs from no government on the very far right and total government on the very far left. Both socialism and facisism are far left forms of government. Socialism is a lettle less left than total government... but they are of the same stripe and they both lead to total government.

Just a thought.

Posted by: markandbeth92 | May 19, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Chris you are begining to worry me?! Spector stated out as a Deem. 30 some years ago and survived quite well, even after the Warren Commison on JFK. Your barely contained smiles on the neurotic Mathews show, may indicate your reaching the Peter Principle?
In addition, Pelosi and Obam are fine. They are doing their jobs, unlike Reid and McConnel. good thing your cute or you'd be out of job. Keep the Dradcula teeth covered-they show too often on TV and well, along with your youth and lack of historical facts you may be out the door yourself. Be well...and don't condem the Conn. Att. gen. with the litlerally spiting, smug, Chris M on CSNBC. The Conn. paper reporter was on with Judy Woodrift last night on PBS Newhour and said after 2 decades of coverage-he never heard him deliberalty mislead his service record and has benn a great friend to the military veterans going ALL the funerals. GEES, you talking heads are starved like mad dogs. The NEWS service is next, after the electoral gets doen fixing congress.

Posted by: crrobin | May 19, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Memo to Charlie Cook and Chris Cillizza:

In other words, all politics is local. Critz was was Murtha's pork barrel bagman, and he delivered the goods. His election says nothing about the national mood -- nor does Specter's. Now Rand Paul is another story. Dems must go grassroots populist -- and restore civil and human rights in America -- to demonstrate that theirs is the true people's party. Speaking of which...


FED MICROWAVE CELL TOWER WEAPON SYSTEM SILENTLY ASSAULTS, TORTURES, IMPAIRS 'TARGETED' AMERICANS: VETERAN JOURNALIST

• "Dissidents" and "undesirables" also targeted for financial sabotage, community-based, police-protected vigilante harassment -- a genocidal purge.

All of those cell towers you see all over America are NOT all for phone calls.

Some of them are TORTURE TOWERS -- part of a nationwide microwave/laser radio frequency "directed energy weapon" system that is being used by operatives of the multi-agency Homeland Security-run "fusion center" network to silently torture, impaiir, and physically and neurologically degrade the functioning and well-being of extrajudicially, unjustly '"targeted" citizens...


And apparently, this precision-targeted domestic weapon system being used to attack and harm U.S. citizens has been deployed WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF CONGRESS or high state officials.

• When will President Obama get a grip on a rogue bureaucracy still run by Bush-Cheney leave-behinds?

http://nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves
http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america
OR NowPublic.com/scrivener re: "Obama: Take Down Fusion Center Gestapo..."

Posted by: scrivener50 | May 19, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Mixed emotions on Specter. He delivered much to the state and will be difficult to match in that regard. On the other hand he pulled the GOP line at pretty awful moments from Anita Hill to W's ditch-bound agenda. You would think he'd be a warning to the GOP but I guess they have other ideas. In the end, he was just trying to hold his job.

Posted by: tfspa | May 19, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

EEEE-lec-ted......not.

Posted by: jsavagelaw | May 19, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

EEEE-lec-ted......not.

Posted by: jsavagelaw | May 19, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Slightly off topic, to Hawaii:

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2010305180002

When they finish the voting on May 22, the turnout will have been enormous for a congressional election and by TX standards unbelievable. Its a mail in vote, and 44% have voted with a few days to go. I do not know if it is mail-in only, I am guessing that is the case.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 19, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Oh please screwjob, stifle! What kind of a moron are you? Virtually every piece of mainstream media analysis I have seen favors the Tea Party, favors the republicans, favors the conservatives, favors anyone who is in the least way anti-Obama.

I don't know where you imbeciles on the right get this crap about the media being in the tank for Obama or the democrats. The NYT--a favorite whipping boy for the right--yesterday did a hit piece on Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who is running for Chris Dodd's old seat, by accusing him of precisely what Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh and practically the entire conservative wing of the GOP has done--exaggerate their allegiance to the military, doping up their Vietnam war experiences, and eating up every conceivable deferment one can imagine.

No. Don't try selling that old right wing blubber point about the media being in Obama's pocket. Just look at the bulge in Limbaugh's a$$. That is where the media is.

Posted by: jaxas70 | May 19, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

The headline is "How (and why) Arlen Specter lost". It could just as well have been "How (and why) Joe Sestak won). The fact of the matter is that the Democrats are almost certainly better off with Sestak as their November candidate.

Posted by: justmike | May 19, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

"I am completely delusional and have an irrational hate for illegally-president Barry Hussein Obama. I maintain that his birth certificate and announcements were fraudulent and conspiratorial. He is a socialist and a fascist, and I don't care if you tell me that those political ideologies are mutually exclusive of each other. Therefore, since I have shown to have an aversion to true facts (I don't even consider that phrase redundant), then I refuse to accept any analysis that disproves my perverted world view."

Posted by: screwjob15

Posted by: chris-gso | May 19, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse


Barry picked Arlen Specter to win and campaigned for Specter. Pick me another winner Barry.


Posted by: screwjob15 | May 19, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

There is no reason to waste time and resources analyzing why Specter lost.

Specter lost because he copped the same attitude of most long-time government workers. Once you're in, you have to assault your boss to be kicked out.

Specter spent five terms maintaining status quo. He did nothing of any significant meaning to warrant keeping his job.

It's really quite simple - He was fired because he didn't do his job.

If the voters are serious about their choices of representation, Specter will be one of many who will be fired for not doing their jobs.

Posted by: asmith1 | May 19, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

There is no reason to waste time and resources analyzing why Specter lost.

Specter lost because he copped the same attitude of most long-time government workers. Once you're in, you have to assault your boss to be kicked out.

Specter spent five terms maintaining status quo. He did nothing of any significant meaning to warrant keeping his job.

It's really quite simple - He was fired because he didn't do his job.

If the voters are serious about their choices of representation, Specter will be one of many who will be fired for not doing their jobs.

Posted by: asmith1 | May 19, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

This is priceless. Chris says he was surprised by the margin of Critz' victory in Pa. Yet last week I challenged his analysis touting this as another potential republican pickup by pointing out that in virtually every poll taken Critz had kept a steady 8 point lead. This just another example of how the mainstream media has this negative narrative on democrats that drive their analysis.

This devotion to that narrative seems to benefit the republicans even when they lose. Politico is at it again this morning trying to cheapen the democrat victory by pompously asserting that Critz ran on traditionally conservative value issues such as pro-gun, anti-abortion, anti-health care. This is demonstrably false. Any rundown of Critz campaign message will show that none of these issues was a subject of his campaign. He ran on strictly economic issue and local issues involving jobs and taxes.

The mainstream media has cast its lot with the extreme right of the republican party and you don't have to be a quantum physicist to gather that.

Posted by: jaxas70 | May 19, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

I don't buy your concerns over Paul in Kentucky or that Yarmuth won't face a serious challenge in the fall.

Regarding Paul, of course he garnered fewer votes than Conway or Mongiardo--you said yourself that Kentucky has 573,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans. I think that probably had something to do with Paul having fewer votes than either of them, don't you? Plus, Grayson was no slouch as a candidate, a rising star in the GOP prior to Paul's emergence, so without a serious foe, Paul would have garnered still more votes. Finally, everyone familiar with Kentucky politics knows that Kentuckians are frequently registered Democrat while voting Republican in national races (my conservative parents being anecdotal examples). Traditionally in Kentucky, in local and state races there was no Republican primary (often not even a Republican candidate), so you wouldn't be able to vote in the primaries if not registered as a Democrat. So the large Democratic registration in Kentucky is clearly not a harbinger of trouble for Paul, it's just an idiosyncratic political characteristic of the Commonwealth.

Regarding Yarmuth, it strikes me as odd to discuss the anti-incumbent, anti-establishment mood of the country (which clearly persists in Kentucky given Paul's large victory), and then suggest that Yarmuth won't receive a serious challenge in November because Jeff Reetz, "a candidate touted by national Republicans," didn't win the primary. It would seem that an anti-establishment candidate such as Todd Lally (outsider, war vet, etc.) would present the most effective challenge to a candidate like Yarmuth in this political climate. He's essentially the anti-Yarmuth.

Posted by: wnjone00 | May 19, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

And I would like to suggest Manan Trivedi as a subject for The Rising.

I know he's a Democrat and that should disqualify him, but he ran a great campaign to narrowly win the Demcoratic primary in PA 6th CD. His web page http://www.trivediforcongress.com/ outlines a great Democratic agenda and details his background as a battalion surgeon in Iraq and a new father (he's 35). A doctor and a soldier, he has knowledge of the two biggest issues facing us.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

"We are completely in the bag for Barack Obama and work feverishly to whitewash any event foretells huge Democrat loses in November."

Your Editorial Staff

Posted by: screwjob15 | May 19, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

I predicted Sestak would be the next senator from Pennsylvania when he declared his candidacy last year. I stand by that prediction. He will crush Toomey in November.

Conway will win in Kentucky.

Arkansas will be interesting. The demographics favor Lincoln now that Morrison is out, but Halter has proved he can run well and has momentum. I think the D's have a better chance of holding the seat if Halter wins the primary, but at this point (barring another liaison with a staffer on the R side) Arkansas is a likely Republican pickup.

I don't see the Republicans re-taking the House or gaining more than 2 seats in the Senate in November. The same thing that makes it difficult for the Dems to herd their caucus is the same thing that gives them an advantage: they can field a much more diverse field of candidates tailored to the various districts. Republicans have been weeding ideological diversity out of their ranks and this has only been accelerated by the Tea Party. R's have been running in special elections on a national platform, D's largely on local issues. See the special election results for how that's worked out.

Any news on Hawaii's special Congressional election yet?

Posted by: Gallenod | May 19, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

This election was not about rejecting Obama. It was about electing a Democrat, who is closely aligned with Democratic values. Many Democrats in PA have never warmed to Arlen Specter and don't trust him. I have been voting against him for 24 years and finally was successful.

Posted by: phillyguy2 | May 19, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

cdierd1944 -- I'll co-sign 3 times!

The Critz news is great for the Democrats. The Republicans ran as hard as they could, they spent as much money as they could, they had a BIG opening... and they couldn't get close. They are going to have to re-think their tired approach of running against Obama and Pelosi (not working) and start running on issues specific to the CD/state where the election is. Otherwise they are just going to lose left (Democrats) and right (TEA Party).

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 8:30 AM | Report abuse

As we discussed few days ago, Republicans will actually have to be for something in order to win. Many have believed raging at Obama and Pelosi would sweep away all Ds. But the Republican Rising! is going to fizzle out if they don't put a positive, downright optimistic message together and soon.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

"Rep. Tim Holden, who voted against the party's health care bill, won 66 percent to 34 percent against Sheila Dow Ford, an unknown and underfunded candidate. Holden joins Reps. Larry Kissell (D-N.C.) and Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) as Members who voted against health care and experienced similar primary results."

Thought this quote by CC was interesting. You could also throw Critz in the Pennsylvania 12 into this mix. Everyone who wins in this primary season, be it Democrat or Republican, runs agaist Obamacare.

Posted by: RobT1 | May 19, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

According to Tim Burns: "It’s a referendum on the Obama-Pelosi agenda.” Asked and answered.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | May 19, 2010 8:20 AM | Report abuse

On the PA-12, Critz will still be the most conservative Congressman that district has had for at least half a century. John Murtha's predecessor, John Saylor, was a liberal Republican who was known for his strong pro-environment views.

On special elections, does the OH-5 race in 2007 count as a contested election? Dems put some, though not much, effort into that one.

Finally, on Oregon, Republicans should be happy that Bill Sizemore didn't get the nomination. He's a terrible candidate who got crushed by Kitzhaber in 1998, losing all but one county (including an 80%+ McCain one).

Posted by: joeyjoejoe | May 19, 2010 8:17 AM | Report abuse

#1-I am still suprised with the victory for Sestak, but I think in the end this may help the Dems hold this seat. Also Sestak has shown that his team is great at making good ads that can define the campaign, which will be pivotal in facing Toomey (who definitly has some great baggage that needs airing).

#2-Look CC, I know Charlie Cook is your BFF, but this is ridiculous,
"Democrats faced a horrible political environment in the 12th district but fielded a better campaign with a sharper message and were able to hang on,"

Hang on? He beat him by 9 points in a race that the GOP spent almost 1 Million dollars on in a district that McCain won. This definitly qualifies as an a$s-woopin in my book. Also Critz will win in November too since Burns' money is going to dry. Chris Van Hollen and his team knows what they are doing, have a TON of cash, and although they will lose seats in November it is looking more and more like it will be a lose of 15-20 seats.

#3-If Kentucky doesn't jump up the list to at least 4 on the next Senate line I will be suprised. This quote says it all "... both state Attorney General Jack Conway, who won the Democratic nod, and Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo, who lost it, each received more votes than Paul." That is not a good sign for Cornyn and the GOP's senate hopes.

#4-Everyone I know in Oregon is a DIE-hard liberal. I just don't see them voting a GOPer in, no matter how tall he is. Now if Clyde the Glide was running that is a different story.

Posted by: AndyR3 | May 19, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Very interesting stuff last night and mostly good news for the Democrats. I was hoping for a Sestak v Toomey race from the start.
KY turnout was a surprise. The TP'ers do know that you have to vote, no?

I wonder how many potential candidates for office are regretting their decision not to challenge an incumbent.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | May 19, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Nice summary. My take, since everyone else in the world is giving theirs, is as follows.
1. The GOP obstructionist strategy is not working. Voters don't believe Washington is doing what they need to do and just saying no is not a winning strategy.
2. The Tea Party may become a viable third party if they don't take over the Republican Party. They have a good following in the south and may win a few races. Again, they are going to have to articulate what they are offering vs. gross generalizations.
3. Arlen Specter was too old and didn't make a compelling case for his candidacy. Pittsburg beat Philly again. Sestak has a better chance to win in the fall. He needs to make people understand that it is the Republicans who ran the car in the ditch and the Democrats who are pulling it out while the GOP tries to stop them from doing so.
4. Critz election, one of many for the Dems in special elections, probably indicates that all the gloom and doom about the Dems chances in the fall from pundits is overblown.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | May 19, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Nice summary. My take, since everyone else in the world is giving theirs, is as follows.
1. The GOP obstructionist strategy is not working. Voters don't believe Washington is doing what they need to do and just saying no is not a winning strategy.
2. The Tea Party may become a viable third party if they don't take over the Republican Party. They have a good following in the south and may win a few races. Again, they are going to have to articulate what they are offering vs. gross generalizations.
3. Arlen Specter was too old and didn't make a compelling case for his candidacy. Pittsburg beat Philly again. Sestak has a better chance to win in the fall. He needs to make people understand that it is the Republicans who ran the car in the ditch and the Democrats who are pulling it out while the GOP tries to stop them from doing so.
4. Critz election, one of many for the Dems in special elections, probably indicates that all the gloom and doom about the Dems chances in the fall from pundits is overblown.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | May 19, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Nice summary. My take, since everyone else in the world is giving theirs, is as follows.
1. The GOP obstructionist strategy is not working. Voters don't believe Washington is doing what they need to do and just saying no is not a winning strategy.
2. The Tea Party may become a viable third party if they don't take over the Republican Party. They have a good following in the south and may win a few races. Again, they are going to have to articulate what they are offering vs. gross generalizations.
3. Arlen Specter was too old and didn't make a compelling case for his candidacy. Pittsburg beat Philly again. Sestak has a better chance to win in the fall. He needs to make people understand that it is the Republicans who ran the car in the ditch and the Democrats who are pulling it out while the GOP tries to stop them from doing so.
4. Critz election, one of many for the Dems in special elections, probably indicates that all the gloom and doom about the Dems chances in the fall from pundits is overblown.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | May 19, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

I guess the lesson for Democrats in the Pennsylvania 12 race was that to win this year you need to run against Obama and your whole national party to win your election. Critz wouldn't touch Obama with a ten foot pole. As a matter of fact if you took the D and R's away from their names and just looked at their positions it would be hard to tell who was the Republican and who was the Democrat. Who was pro gun, anti abortion, against Obamacare, against new taxes, against cap and trade? I'll give you and hint: it was the guy that won last night. Be interesting to see how he does this fall after serving under Nancy Pelosi and has to take a few liberal big government votes for the team. That's what usually happens, the blue dogs turn yellow once they get to Washington.

Posted by: RobT1 | May 19, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Arlen Spector lost because he lied to his constituents and didn't care. It was all about him and not about the people he represented. Good riddance, little man!

Posted by: GordonShumway | May 19, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse

I was pleased with all of the Primary results. Americans across the political spectrum are sick & tired of the business as usual approach to governing. The days of Big business running Big Government are over.

Now, if we all can insist on term limits we all will be on our way to a better ran government that is not nearly as bloated as the one we have now.

Posted by: SteelWheel25 | May 19, 2010 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Specter's loss should not come as a surprise. Moderate, centralist candidates are the falling by the wayside, while each party’s fringe candidates take center stage. This was foreshadowed in our state laboratory of California a few years ago – far-left and far-right candidates winning and then being unable to reach agreement on anything. It is disappointing to think that the worst is yet to come in American politics.

Posted by: just34ice | May 19, 2010 7:54 AM | Report abuse

For you, Gatecrasher -

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/19/opinion/19wed4.html?hp

"There are few sins less forgivable in American politics than claiming unearned military valor."

Your criticism of CC is misplaced. He has already made Blumenthal a topic, and he will again, I am sure.
If you are not a regular here, you should understand that CC posts several topics a day. This post is about the votes yesterday.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 19, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

The glaring typos and grammar errors to "fix" this morning, my friends, include:

1] "More importantly" - it is rarely correct to use this form of the phrase because it is seldom adverbial in intention. Say “more important” instead.

2] "Still, registered Democrats in Kentucky still outnumber...". Still, still?

3] "...of both she and Halter...". The preposition takes "her". To her, by her, for her, at her, of her, etc.

4] "...Democrats won't lost seats...". Obvious typo.

Nevertheless, this was a straightforward presentation of what happened yesterday, and I thank all three of you. I would only add the suggestion that Specter's age and health were a likely subliminal negative. Did voters say they liked Sestak's "energy"? I believe that dynamic worked against McC in the autumn of 2008, as well.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | May 19, 2010 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Just so you know Margaret, Chris Dudley has no chance, there is no possible way for him to beat Kitzhaber. So, Dudley beat the TEA candidate for the chance to get smoked by the D candidate. That is Oregon's gov story and I'm sticking by it. Meanwhile, up across the border we are still wondering, what will Dino Rossi do? Heh, heh,

Posted by: shrink2 | May 19, 2010 7:35 AM | Report abuse

How you fail to mention the Blumenthol scandal I have no idea.

Despicable

Posted by: Gatecrasher | May 19, 2010 7:31 AM | Report abuse

Exciting night last night. I'm not sure what it means to get so excited over a bunch of primaries and a special election for a seven month term in Congress.

I never had real strong feelings about Specter's party switch. He was always one of the good Republicans to me. The party switch was definitely opportunistic, but I'm sure we all know that's how politics works. There are no virgins in this world. I'll take an opportunist like Specter over a loyalist like David Vitter any day. I'm not a one issue guy, but the past two years, I've been close. Specter was a staunch supporter of health care reform and he helped get it done. In any case, he's been a Senator for longer than I've been a person and it will be weird to see him gone.

PA-12, I can't say much more that Chris C hasn't said. Yet another special election going the Dems' way. And like NY-23, in a McCain carried district. Yeah, each of these elections has its own set of circumstances, but there is definitely a pattern here. Even as the opinion of Dems has supposedly gone south, they still keep winning. And not just winning, they are dominating. The only close one was Bill Owens' 2 point win in NY-23. This latest one by Critz was a 9 point victory. A nine point win in a district that McCain took and one that Republicans were heavily focused on. It's just a reminder that while people might be less than pleased with the Dems, people still seem to remember how badly the GOP damaged the country when they were in power. Will the Dems lose some seats in November? Probably. But it's looking less and less like that tidal wave that people are predicting. I think the Dems have reached their nadir of popular opinion and are climbing back. Jobs are on the rise, consumer confidence is growing, and people are more supportive of the health care law. November is still a ways off, but the Dems are definitely the ones with the momentum at this moment in time.

Posted by: DDAWD | May 19, 2010 7:13 AM | Report abuse

Oregon Republicans make me proud. They chose the NBA candidate over the TEA Party candidate.

Was there a representative of the GSA (Girl Scouts of America) running on the ticket? She would have smoked 'em both in her self-starting solar oven.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | May 19, 2010 6:31 AM | Report abuse

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