I have had a day to digest the news, and speaking as a conservative, and a life-long Republican, my first reaction remains my reaction:
“I had to hold my nose, and vote for Specter. Now I have to do neither.”
Why vote for him, you say? Well, years ago, when I was sitting on the knee of (well, on the floor, looking up at) my Grandfather, I asked him why we should support the Maryland US Senator Charles “Mac” Mathias, since he was about as liberal as the (then) junior Senator from Maryland, Paul Sarbanes. He explained that “he may be a monster, but he’s our monster.” A rather cynical view, but at the time (late 1970s, and the heart of the “Carter Economic Disaster” the likes of which we STILL haven’t seen since) it was clear that if Mathias lost the primary the democrat candidate would most likely win the seat, reducing the numbers of Republicans below the line allowing for a filibuster. So keeping that number was important, if only for the greater good.
So, I learned the lesson well, and followed the logic. When necessary, I have voted for a candidate I didn’t like “all that much” because of the greater good.
I most likely would have again. But now, thanks to Senator Specter’s decision to return to the Democrat Party, I am free once again to vote conscience.
I am now only left with one question: how will our good friend over at “Pressing the Flesh” respond? Will he welcome this lost sheep into the Democrat fold after all these years, or will he actively campaign against that former Republican? I await his post!