July 26th, 2007
05:26 PM ET
12 years ago

Specter: Senate Dems playing politics

Watch Specter’s comments Thursday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Sen. Arlen Specter, R.-Pennsylvania, said Thursday that Senate Democrats were just playing politics with their attacks on the Bush administration including their request for a special counsel to investigate Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

“It’s been a great fundraising device for the Democratic Party,” Specter, the ranking member on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said during a press conference on Capitol Hill.

Specter also accused Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, of having a conflict of interest because Schumer is both in charge of Democratic fundraising in the Senate and is the chairman of the Senate subcommittee whose Democratic members requested the special counsel investigation of Gonzales.

“Everybody's trying to top everybody else and they're reaching for the front pages,” said Specter.

- CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart

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soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. cliff jones Honolulu hi

    I guess Arlen is up for re-election again.He knows that Gonzales should be put in jail.

    July 26, 2007 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  2. bprosserme



    July 26, 2007 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  3. Mark, Colorado Springs

    Republican's lost the right to use the "playing politics" card when they impeached Bill Clinton in his final two years of office just so they could garner support going into the 2000 election.

    Everyone in Washington needs to shut up about the other party and start working toward solutions to our nations problems.

    July 26, 2007 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  4. Mike, sacramento CA

    I find it exceedingly difficult to accept that any one legislator can accuse the other of "playing politics", when that's all any of them seem to do. After all, if you simply look at the congressional record, you will see a record riddled with bills that commend, express, urge, support, congratulate, or declare, but few that really do anything meaningful. If there is one that's remotely meaningful, it will almost always die in committee, if it even passes a first vote. Which forces the question: What do these people really do? Answer: Play politics. Well hey, at least it looks like they're doing something, I suppose its less dangerous than actually doing something.

    July 26, 2007 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  5. Damian Brumley, Verda, Louisiana

    Perhaps spector can fashion another magic bullet to shoot down gonzales truthiness about the TSA meeting, his hospital visit and his visit with spector and the guys at the JC.

    July 26, 2007 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  6. Laurence, Newport News, Va.

    If Bush, Cheney and the rest of those political hoodlums that call themselves republicans went to jail or got dragged through the mud and over very sharp rocks it wouldn't satisfy all the harm and shame that they've brought to this nation and its citizens. This administration as no integrity concerning anything at all. Bush says he's a man of faith, but I tell you a truth, that he does not believe in the Christ Jesus. If he did he wouldn't treat the least of these the brethren of Christ with such contempt and distain. Does the lower ninth ward ring a bell? He must answer for his dirt, Nixon did, and Bush and his administration is head and shoulders above anything that Nixon ever did.

    July 26, 2007 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  7. Pixie, Murfreesboro, TN

    Exactly, how dare the Democrats "play politics" by providing the smallest amount of congressional oversight and actually insist on enforcing subpoenas! Go freaking figure.

    July 26, 2007 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  8. bprosserme

    Vitriolic Hatred. Why? What is behind this new viciousness? This is different from the usual tit-for-tat, what's going on between the Dems and Reps now is fatal.

    July 26, 2007 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  9. Robert Burns, Attorney, Ocean Beach, San Diego, CA

    O wad some Power the giftie gie us
    To see oursels as ithers see us!
    Robt. Burns 1785

    Hyprocrisy a la mode! Read this from http://www.tpmmuckraker.com/archives/003765.php as to Specter's own recent comments which appear now to be pure politics to cover for being Bush's poodle: "Next up was Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA). The panel's ranking Republican, listening to Gonzales's new revelation - or quasi-revelation, as the case may be - said simply, 'I do not find your testimony credible.' Specter said that it was obvious that, as Gonzales initially confirmed last month, Comey was testifying about the Terrorist Surveillance Program - meaning that Gonzales was not only lying to the Senate in his 2006 testimony, but lying today about 'other intelligence activities' to cover up the lie. His advice to Gonzales was 'to review your testimony carefully' and that the committee should see 'if your credibility has been breached to the point of being actionable.'" Impeachment or not, it's time to jail Gonzales on civil contempt charges until he becomes reasonably truthful and cooperative.

    July 26, 2007 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  10. Bob, San Francisco, Ca

    Arlen Specter is one of the few Republicans I have respect for, but I think he is playing politics himself by saying the Dems are playing politics. This is almost to announce that he's still a Republican to those who think he's been siding against Bush regarding Iraq.

    July 26, 2007 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  11. IF Colorado

    There is so much stench to the Bush administration, and for so many reasons. Admittedly, he hasn’t been concretely proven guilty of anything but (intentional?) ignorance; however, he is judge, jury, and holds the key to the evidence room.

    To support the stance that executive privilege should prevail is asking to be deceived. There are certainly circumstances in which executive privilege is appropriate, but I hardly call hiding the truth from the citizens who "elected" you to office in a "democracy" a worthy cause. Investigate them. Investigate them all. Investigate anyone who serves this country, democrat or republican, and has questionable motive, agenda, or actions. If this administration is investigated in a reasonable fashion and found to be the victim of left-wing nut jobs controlling the media (yeah right), then you can laugh loudest and have the peace of mind knowing that you were right all along. Do you not want to know the truth? Do you not want the system to be improved simply because there may have been a worse precedent set in the past by the "opposing" party?

    Fundamentally, both republican and democratic ideologies have some very good principles, but there is little evidence of positive action, not rhetoric during the elections, by either side during my lifetime.

    July 26, 2007 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  12. Roger Morris

    Senator Spector has some explaining of his own to do. It's not the panels fault that we are where we are. He understands that if his "Pen" had not of been compromised by one of his staffers, all this would not be happening as we would of had to "Confirm" the Regent 1st year lawyers who are running our Justice Department.

    Its too late Senator Spector. Maybe an upfront confrontation is what is needed to bring back the fabric of the constitution first then the Law of the Land second.

    It's not about money. They got paid, we are the ones out here suffering. We are not butt hurt, we have been stuck in the "Darken Days of the White House" for over five years based on Lies. Lies. Lies. Lies. Lies. Lies.

    Do you job and prosecute. America can handle it, as the world needs to witness it.

    July 26, 2007 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  13. Melinda, Kemp, Texas

    Arlen, you got some splaining to do!! You changed your story after boarding Air Force One, it must be 'de plane! Do you really think we buy into all that "political crap" when you made statements in agreement with the Committee during the hearing? Oops, I think you call that a flip-flop and I think those are now banned from the White House!!

    July 27, 2007 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  14. Mary, Beaver, PA

    Spector began his Senate career as a champion of civil liberties. When Bush was running 90% approval ratings, he made sure that everyone knew what great buddies he and Bush were when he was last up for re-election. Civil liberties be damned. Now he sings a different tune. Spector, I used to respect you when you were an advocate for liberty. I lost my taste for you long ago. It will bring me joy to see you go down to defeat in the next election. I will be voting against you again!

    July 27, 2007 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  15. Betty, PA

    I feel oddly confused. "Mr. Attorney General, do you expect us to believe that?” replied Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the committee’s ranking Republican. So Senator Specter accuses the AG of lying yet somehow it becomes the Democrats playing politics when there is a request for the truth? The only chance the Republicans have is to distance themselves from this Administration. I wonder why they are so afraid to do so. They'll take it right up to the edge and then tiptoe back. I'd say not wanting to serve the people in seeking the truth when an obvious perjury has occurred is the group who is "playing politics."

    July 27, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |