A lot of major things have gone on the past week that I haven't posted about because of my time constraints.
First, Chrysler declared bankruptcy. Who knows what will happen. It's now in the hands of a judge. In Bankruptcy court, judges are a blind draw, and they drew Arthur Gonzalez (who was also the judge in Enron and Worldcom). At least they didn't draw a rookie. Judges have a lot of discretion in bankruptcy law, and there's a lot of speculation on what will happen, as well as a lot of people running their mouths. I have little to almost no knowledge of bankruptcy law, so I won't be making any predictions here. I'm not happy with some of the actions taken by the Obama foreign car loving task force, but that's no longer the big issue here with this filing.
Secondly, Arlen Specter took the path of less resistance for 2012 and switched parties.
A bunch of FOOLS are yapping about this being the social issues and the far right, yadda yadda yadda. Bullshit. The GOP establishment in DC supported him, and was going to do so against Toomey again. The RNC supported him. The NRSC supported him. Bush campaigned for him in the last election. So did the more conservative senator at the time Rick Santorum (at the cost of some of his base). The NRA endorsed him. Against Toomey. That would likely happen again. Most DC establishment will back the incumbent. Period. Most PACS will support an incumbent unless there's a bad history on those issues. That wasn't changing in 2010.
It is not new that Specter had some union support. It is not new that Specter was pro-abortion to a degree. It is not new that Specter was not a social conservative at all. That was not held against him here. He had a lot of Washington support, and would have had it from the Republican establishment, even from conservatives. He's actually been generally good on firearms issues for someone from Philly, so that's not been an issue with him. The NRA endorsed him - even against Toomey. This isn't new, and wasn't changing in 2010.
Specter did not switch parties because the Republican culture in Washington DC disliked him. They didn't and they supported him. Senator John Cornyn of Texas was one of his biggest backers, and he's the head of the NRSC. Specter switched parties because the primary voters in Pennsylvania had enough of his 30 years and Washington and are about to send him home. What was the straw that broke the back? It wasn't social issues. It was the big spending. We have had ENOUGH of the big spending. The grass roots has had enough. We had enough of the bridges to nowhere, the Bush spending, and the Obama spending that is 100 times worse than even the Bush spending. Specter is a big part of the problem. See ya. DO let the door hit you on your way out.
Now I'm not a big fan of purges. However, there needs to be a limit. Part of the major problem with the GOP the last eight years is that they acted like democrats on the fiscal issues outside of tax cuts. Tax cuts work great, but they need to be accompanied by spending cuts. The problem is credibility. Every single time the republicans try to run as democrat-lite, it KILLS us. There needs to be difference between the parties. Now I don't expect every Republican candidate to be a cookie cutter. The Mark Kirk distict in Illinois North Shore could not be won by an ideal Republican candidate in another somewhat democrat leaning district, Michigan's 1st (Stupak) They would get killed in each other's district. I understand that.
However, there needs to be a minimum standard for Republican candidates. Low taxes, lower spending and less government. Voters at the minimum, should be able to expect that from the Republicans. This is the worst aspect of Bush's presidency. We no longer are known for less government. That needs to change, and change fast.
Third, Pennsylvania's primary. Hotline said it best. STAY AWAY FROM MY (their) PRIMARY This is the one that's pissing me off. Right now, both the NRSC and DSCC is rumored to be playing games in this primary. First off Pat Toomey has won a democrat leaning house district three times. His seat voted for Gore and I believe Kerry at the same time it voted for Pat Toomey and Charlie Dent. Pat Toomey replaced a democrat, Paul McHale. He won that district by 10 points. Pat Toomey did not represent the Lancaster or York suburbs. He represented the Leigh Valley in Eastern PA. Allentown and Bethelem. He won that seat in 98, 2000, and 2002 - despite Gore and Ed Rendell. Pat Toomey is not a joke candidate, and he has won independent and democrat votes.
The NRSC is rumored to push one of their own candiates. I hope that backfires on them if they do so. This is a choice for Pennsylvanians. We have primaries in this country for a reason. We do not have coronations. After seeing the results of Washington based politics in the GOP over the last eight years, it's been a disaster. Time to step aside and let the experts take over. The voters in the primary election. You people in the NRSC were a DISASTER in 06 and 08 with your games. My advice to republicans reading this. Until they prove otherwise, don't donate a dime to NRSC/NRCC and only give to candidates.
Many democrats there are not happy that the Democrat leadership is supporting Specter in their primary. They don't trust him either. Specter is out for Specter. Period. He switched because the Republican voters in Pennsylvania had enough of him and were going to vote for Pat Toomey. They had enough of the spending. So he's going to take his chance in the democrat primary. We'll see how they like a candidate who was a major supporter of the war, the death penalty, the Patriot Act, and Clarence Thomas. Why should the democrats vote for Specter, when they can get a real democrat in the primary?
If both establishments run their people, I hope they both lose the primary, just to send a message. These fools still haven't gotten yet. It's the Peter principle in action.
Fourth - The retirement of Souter. Many on the right believe the sky is falling and some are posting ridiculous speculation that the pick will be Bill Ayers or someone like that. That's ridiculous. Won't happen.
This isn't the worse case scenario. On an ideological basis, he's probably the 2nd or 3rd most left wing (behind Breyer who is the Scalia of the left and MAYBE Stevens). Souter is also 69 years old, the youngest of the liberal wing. Souter could have possibly served another 10-20 years if he wanted with today's life spans. The one real bad thing of his retirement IMO is the 4th Amendment implications with the cases like Arizona v Gant possible going the other way. Souter was the swing vote on that issue.
On the Liberal side
Stevens is 89
Ginsburg is 76 (and fighting Pancreatic Cancer, good luck to her there)
Breyer is 70
And Souter is retiring at 69
On the Generally Conservative side
Scalia is 73
Thomas is 60
Roberts is 54
Alito is 59
And the swing vote, Kennedy, is 72
The worse case scenario Obama can do is put someone crazy on there in philosophy like Cass Sunstein, Erwin Chemerinsky, or Harold Koh and who is about 45 years old or so. The second worst case scenario is appointing Granholm who is about as qualified to be a SCOTUS justice as I currently am based on experience. More than likely Obama will be picking someone from the far left (difference than crazy far left like Sunstein) and between 50-55. I hope it's not one of Reno's crew (Eric Holder, Seth Waxman or Jamie Gorelick) or the Chermerinsky crowd. We'll see what happens.
Volokh has some good discussion about this