The Corner

Against Specter

K Lo posted my NRODT story on Arlen Specter today here. Quick story: When I interviewed Specter for the piece last summer, my first question was “What’s the conservative case for your re-election?” He could have said many things–the GOP’s narrow control of the Senate means Republicans shouldn’t be taking chances, he supported a round of Bush tax cuts, he’s been okay on defense issues, etc. Instead, he mentioned his support for Clarence Thomas–definitely important at the time, though Specter also has been re-elected twice since then. Are conservatives supposed to thank him forever? And why should we view supporting Thomas as a favor? It should actually be a precondition. Then Specter went into a strange defense of his opposition to the Bork nomination. And that was it. An astonishly weak answer to a softball question. The man just doesn’t understand conservatives, doesn’t seem interested in trying, and deserves to go.

John J. Miller, the national correspondent for National Review and host of its Great Books podcast, is the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of A Gift of Freedom: How the John M. Olin Foundation Changed America.

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