Forget about social issues. I’ll tell you the real problem with Arlen Specter. One of the reasons reform of Title VI subsidies to academic programs of area studies (like Middle East Studies) had to start in the House is that Specter is one of the key protectors of that program in the Senate. Thank goodness this election expanded the Republican majority in the Senate. My little campaign for area studies reform is just one tiny piece of the puzzle. But our legislation has been stalled in the Senate, in part because, with folks like Specter, Republican control is tenuous at best. So it isn’t just social issues. Specter is liberal on lots of things, and that has blocked all sorts of good legislative efforts. Is this really the man the party wants running Judiciary?