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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 5, 2009 / 11 Iyar 5769

Sen. Specter, meet your new friends

By Byron York


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | What does the future hold for Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter? A lot of uncertainty, soured relationships and possible disaster. And that's just with his newfound friends in the Democratic Party.


There's no doubt Senate Democrats wanted Specter's help with the president's agenda this year. His vote in the Democratic column could mean significantly better chances for the Obama administration's proposals on health care, energy and education. So Specter's support will be valuable to his new party in the short run.


The long run is another matter. Go behind the news conferences and photo ops, and Specter's fellow Democrats aren't exactly welcoming him with open arms and warm feelings — or even respect. Specter's defection, one well-connected party strategist told me, "seems to me like the cowardly act of a cornered man." Underlying Democratic feelings about Specter is this fact: Even though the party faithful are happy to have Specter's vote in the coming months, they would rather have someone else come November 2010, when Pennsylvania elects its next senator. "As a Democrat who wants Obama's agenda passed, am I happy? Yes," the Democratic strategist said. "Would I rather have a real Democrat? Absolutely. Do I think I will eventually get one? Yes."


It shouldn't surprise Specter that his new allies in the Democratic Party don't think of him as a "real" Democrat. Why should they? He's a Democrat of necessity, and everyone knows it. And even though there's word that Senate Democratic leaders have assured Specter that he won't face a challenge from within his new party next year, there's really no way they can guarantee that another Pennsylvania Democrat won't make the run. If you were a true-blue party loyalist in Philadelphia, would you want Specter as your candidate or a "real" Democrat?


"If (Pennsylvania Gov.) Ed Rendell ran against Specter, he would mop the floor with him," the strategist told me. "If (Philadelphia Mayor Michael) Nutter ran against him, he would mop the floor with him." A number of other Democrats might also prevail against Specter in a party primary. Who can say for sure they won't try?


So Specter, 79 years old and apparently determined to serve another term in the Senate, is in a very vulnerable position. "Democrats have the blackmail card," the strategist explained. "In the past, the Republicans could say to Specter, 'We're going to challenge you in the primary,' and he could say, 'To hell with you — I'll become a Democrat.' He can't say that anymore. If the Democrats say, 'We're going to challenge you in the primary,' he can't say, 'To hell with you — I'll become a Republican.' They'll say, 'Noooooo, you won't.'"


As far as Republicans are concerned, it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. More than a few in the GOP were gobsmacked when Specter explained his defection in nakedly strategic terms. "He made perfectly clear in a private conversation with (Senate Minority Leader Mitch) McConnell that his decision was made … when his pollster came to him and said, 'You will not win the Republican primary,'" a top Senate aide told me. "So the decision to run as a Democrat wasn't because he wanted to leave the Republican Party, or because the party was mean to him." Specter said much the same thing in public; his decision reeked of sheer desperation.


So now, it's on to the new 60-vote, filibuster-proof Democratic majority (assuming Al Franken eventually wins in Minnesota). Even though there's been a lot of attention paid to the Republican Party's new powerlessness — and it's true, the GOP is toast — Specter's jump also creates new pressure within the Democratic caucus. With Specter, and 41 votes, Republicans had the power to stop anything, but only if all their members stuck together. That made the inclinations of moderates like Susan Collins, Olympia Snowe and Specter critical to the GOP's fortunes. Now, with just 40 votes, that doesn't really matter. Republicans can stick together and still not stop anything.


Democrats, on the other hand, now have the power to pass anything, but only if all their members stick together. That makes moderates like Ben Nelson and Blanche Lincoln critical to the party's fortunes. "From now on, the story is, 'Can the president keep his troops in line?'" the Senate aide told me.


And the newest Democrat, Arlen Specter, better keep his new colleagues happy. After all, his future is in their hands.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on Byron York's column by clicking here.


Previously:



04/27/09 Ted Olson: ‘Torture’ probes will never end
04/20/09 Who's Laughing at the ‘Axis of Evil’ today?
04/14/09 Congress needs Google to track stimulus money
04/06/09 Beyond AIG: A bill to let Big Government set your salary
03/30/09 On Spending and the Deficit, McCain Was Right
03/24/09 It's Obama's crisis now
03/17/09: Geithner-Obama economics: A joke that's not funny



© 2009, NEA

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