February 8th, 2010
10:58 AM ET
13 years ago

Pennsylvania Democratic Party lines up behind Specter

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/18/art.getty.arlen.specter.jpg caption="Pennsylvania Democratic Party lines up behind Specter."]

Washington (CNN) - Though he was a Republican for 44 years before switching parties last April, Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter scored a big political win over the weekend by securing the backing of the state Democratic Party.

At a meeting of the state party executive committee in Lancaster on Saturday, Specter won an impressive 77 percent of the committee vote.

The endorsement is a symbolic victory for Specter in his Democratic primary battle against Rep. Joe Sestak – the former Navy admiral running to Specter's left – and will help protect Specter from critics who have questioned his commitment to the party.

Specter and Sestak will face off in a May 18 primary; the winner will likely face Republican Pat Toomey in the general election.

Filed under: Arlen Specter • Pennsylvania • Popular Posts
soundoff (72 Responses)
  1. Fed Up

    I don't think that's going to work in this election. Good try though. Seems that everyone Obama stumps for goes down in flams. Life's rough!

    February 8, 2010 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Tony

    So this is a guaranteed loss for the Democrat Party in Pennsylvania. They're too thick-headed to realize it, but most Americans (with the exception of progressives) don't want rubber-stamp politicians like Arlen Specter, or Martha Coakley, or Jon Corzine. They want pragmatists who at least somewhat share their ideology. They want the potential for their senator or their governor (or even their representative) to be a leader rather than a party shill who won't listen to them when they have concerns.

    February 8, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  3. sanity check

    Specter's done enough damage as a Republican. Don't re-elect him as a Democrat, or anything else.

    February 8, 2010 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  4. gr

    This is my home town and I am for Specter. His Pittsburgh office is in the same build that I work in.

    February 8, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  5. Liberal wing nut

    Its not going to help him for the election!

    February 8, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  6. Bill

    Spector is EXACTLY the type of person that has been in office TOO LONG. He needs to be voted out. He is PART OF THE PROBLEM.

    February 8, 2010 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  7. American Feminist

    Com'on all you progressive Dems! Read up on Joe Sestak, and back him for our representative in the Senate! He stands for the true change that we so desperately voted for in 2008.

    February 8, 2010 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  8. Dem from AZ

    I am a Dem but even I know wether you been a republican or democrat and have been in the senate for more then 10 years. It is time to go.

    February 8, 2010 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  9. Ethan

    I like Sestak, but even Specter will do. The Republican Party is only made up of extremist fundamentalist Christians these days. Gone are the moderates like Specter. Fiscal conservatives find that they can no longer tolerate the Republican abuse of our Separation of Church and State and Separation of Powers among the three branches of the Federal government. Our country was founded on the premise of Separation of Church and State for a very specific reason, to avoid religious dogma from taking over the direction and leadership of our country. The Republican Party seeks to do away with that founding notion and instead overthrow our Constitution and Bill of Rights and replace them with Religious Fundamentalist dogma. We CANNOT allow the United States of America - founded on the concept of the freedom OF and freedom FROM religion - to be taken over by the religious extremist zealots in the Republican Party.

    February 8, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  10. Laurie

    I am a Democrat. Democrats need to stand behind their candidates, assert their policies, and stop hiding behind their mama's skirt.

    February 8, 2010 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  11. NancyLV

    DUH! Did anyone really think that he wouldn't get their backing?

    February 8, 2010 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  12. Anonymous

    He is history. 2010 willbe his last election.

    February 8, 2010 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  13. found work without help of stimulus or obama

    stand behind him, because in 2010, all of you will fall, be just like a turkey shoot, We will get Independents in all your seats and change will come.

    February 8, 2010 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  14. Enough

    And they wonder why the Democratic party is going down the tubes? They'll take in any stray loser and support him. No morals there.

    February 8, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  15. JW

    Why would anyone line up to support a candidate that has obviously lost all sense of reality. Just more evidence of Democratic stupidity, they had it all and managed to flush it down the drain in one year. All the Democrats leaving the Capital should take time to empty the trash from their office, it could be useful training for their next job.

    February 8, 2010 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  16. Liberals are worthless

    Hey Dims, why don't you just give the elction to Toomey?

    February 8, 2010 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  17. diridi

    If you have guts, go and pass this needed health care reform, and say positive things...people will automatically vote for "Democrats". Those idiotic Reagan era is gone in USA. God bless you, obama...god bless you....good luck with health care reform....just pass with zero votes of Republican thugs...

    February 8, 2010 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  18. Dale

    This is what I hate about democrates, you will vote your party even if it is an ex convict... You have no morals....
    I'm conservative BUT I want all the old fogeys out of office, Both sides of the isle.

    THink for once people. Go ahead and run Specter BUT remember the people are telling you to look deeper and definitely look anew.

    February 8, 2010 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  19. gary davis harbor oregon

    this is an example of democrats reaching across lines and saying yes to someone that wants to become an american in support of the people . and having ARLEN SPECTER move across the party lines and becoming a democrat is great . we will see more republican jump ship in the near future , because of the TEA PARTY RACIST MOVEMENT with people like Palin in the middle of this hate movement . the original conservative republican ideals are muddled up with radical small splinter groups also known as KKK skin heads and the like . so exspect more republican s to move away from the radical tea party group . and if the tea party group actually gets some one like palin to run in the 2012 presidential bid for office . it will be a welcome for the democrats . because it will split the republican voting base in half . sinching any democrats bid for the office also in most of the senate and congressional races . a three party race ( democrats , republicans , tea party , ) makes me happy 🙂 then if the democrats can learn to unite themselves and move forward with the persidents policies we will come out of this debackled BUSH CHENEY mess 🙂

    February 8, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  20. Bob in Pa

    This man is history. It doesn't matter who endorses him. The people of Pa. have had enough

    February 8, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  21. Mark

    The backing of the democratic party is the kiss of death!

    February 8, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  22. Quit taking my taxes

    Well a democant is the bottom of a pond if they think they can get money from succesful working people they would vote for hitler. Wait that already happened. Leave our country free loaders.

    February 8, 2010 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  23. Pittsburgh voter

    Too bad for the Pa Dems that the voters don't back the Senator.

    February 8, 2010 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  24. El Kababa

    How unfortunate that Democrats are supporting this Senator whose only distinction is his seniority. I could visit any shoe store in America and find a dozen better candidates for the Senate trying on shoes.

    February 8, 2010 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  25. rdepontb

    Sestak, it seems, is what the new politics are all about: "outside" experience, demonstrated leadership, coherent platform.

    Specter, on the other hand, is too closely linked with the type of politics we're all sick and tired of: questionable support for his campaigns, fence-sitting and/or hopping based on political expediency, experience that has been tainted by too many years in "the system."

    ADM Sestak is a true American, in both the classic and modern sense. He deserves not only Democratic party big-boss-level support, but needs to be championed by the voters of PA. That state has so much to do with American prosperity that it would be a travesty not to bring Sestak to the level of a Senator. I am all for him!

    February 8, 2010 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
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