Thursday, Dec. 09, 2010

Joe Sestak, "The Switch"

A politician's fate can rise or fall with a single utterance. For Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter, his electoral doom was in part sealed by his primary opponent's masterful exploitation of a careless, cynical aside made by Specter. A longtime moderate Republican, Specter jumped ship from the GOP in April 2009, in part to avoid a looming primary challenge from his right. Despite receiving the blessing of the Democratic establishment, Specter found himself facing a formidable opponent on the left. Retired Navy admiral Joe Sestak ran an insurgent campaign painting Specter as an unreformed conservative. The effort, ultimately culminating in the Senator's ouster, was bolstered by this ad showing images of Specter alongside George W. Bush and Sarah Palin and mercilessly repeating a clip of an all-too-forthright Specter crowing, "My change in party will enable me to be re-elected."