The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Sunday, June 27, 2004  

What Kind of a Senator?

What kind of a senator is Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.)?

Is he a “moderate” Republican? An independent voice speaking out for the interests of all Pennsylvanians, standing up to the extremists in the Bush White House?

Or is Sen. Specter an administration-toadying clone of the state’s junior senator, Sen. Rick Santorum (R)?

If you can’t see through the smoke and mirrors distributed and assembled by Sen. Specter over the past two decades, or through the haze emitted by the gullible media and the efforts of a handful of single-issue interest groups, including those who donated to his primary campaign, why not let Sen. Specter’s votes on the Senate floor help you decide?

On “coffin secrecy”: The Senate, on a 54 to 39 vote, refused to lift the Pentagon’s ban on news photos of coffins of troops killed in Iraq. A “yes” vote was to lift the photo ban; a “no” vote supported continuing the Bush administration’s suppression of a free press.

Voting no: Sen. Specter and Sen. Santorum.

On “missile defense”: The Senate refused, 56-44, to shift $515 million of Defense Department spending from so-called missile defense to critical antiterrorism programs. A “yes” vote backed the funding shift; a “no” vote favored spending scarce Pentagon funds on missile defense over antiterrorism programs.

Voting no: Sen. Specter and Sen. Santorum.

On “interrogation files”: The Senate rejected, 50-46, a proposal that would require the Justice Department to release relevant files on administration policy governing the interrogation of prisoners of war and enemy combatants. A “yes” vote indicates support for disclosing the documents; a “no” vote represents opposition to releasing the files.

Voting no: Sen. Specter and Sen. Santorum.

(Source: “Area Votes in Congress,” the Philadelphia Inquirer, June 27.)

Thankfully, there’s an alternative to six more years of Sen. Specter: Rep. Joe Hoeffel.

| HOME |

The Rittenhouse Review | Copyright 2002-2006 | PERMALINK |