May 6, 2009

Sen. Harry Reid talked at length today on MSNBC with Andrea Mitchell about Arlen Specter, the closing of Gitmo and possible prosecutions over the torture memos.

Reid said that he talked to Specter after he read that Arlen supported Norm Coleman when he was interviewed by the NY Times, and Specter says he misspoke.

CQ Politics:

The political whirlwind that surrounded Sen. Arlen Specter ’s switch from the Republican to Democratic party had him forgetting which team he is rooting for in 2010.

But after voicing support for Republican Norm Coleman in his contested Minnesota Senate race, Specter said he misspoke in a New York Times magazine interview and is supporting Democrats.


Asked whether he cared about a shortage of Jewish Republicans in the Senate, Specter replied: “I sure do. There’s still time for the Minnesota courts to do justice and declare Norm Coleman the winner.” But questioned outside the Senate chamber Tuesday, Specter said the comment was a mistake.

“In the swirl of moving from one caucus to another, I have to get used to my new teammates,” he said. “I’m ordinarily pretty correct in what I say. I’ve made a career of being precise. I conclusively misspoke.”

Asked who he’s backing now in elections, Specter said, “I’m looking for more Democratic members. Nothing personal.”

Specter's idiocy forced Harry Reid to come out and talk the whole story down. I'm sure he was really giddy about that. And is Specter's support for Franken only based on the fact that he switched sides? Reid also said that he wanted to wait until Dianne Feinsten's investigation into the torture memos was completed before he gave an opinion on the Bush Co. torture memos. Are you sold on her investigation, or the OLC's?

The minute Feinstein became the great congressional leader on torture, I wondered if it wasn't kabuki. It's DiFi we're talking about. She rushed in "begging" the president not to launch any investigation until she'd finished hers. The village babblers were using her investigations as the primary reason not to pursue prosecutions. It makes perfect sense that they would bottle the thing up in secret hearings and a very slow investigation as long as possible.

We already saw them do this with phase two of the pre-war intelligence investigation. It took years and the media treated it as old news, not worth talking about, when it was finished. But it helped keep a lid on the political hot potato that was the dawning realization that the Bush administration had manipulated the intelligence to get us into war.

Secret investigations are a junk yard for rear view mirrors.

We need a special prosecutor, period.

I was surprised that Reid held back on this because he has shown no interest in going after the torture authors, you know, like the Mormon Judge Bybee, but he was very careful today on MSNBC. I wonder if he practiced with Blitzer, because I heard he was mumbling and stumbling his way through The Situation Room.

BLITZER: It certainly sounds like he wants Norm Coleman to beat Al Franken, the Democratic candidate, when the dust settles.

REID: Arlen has said -- that is the way that he said that. I'm not here to put words in his mouth. All I know is he told -- he's told everyone that that isn't the way that it was meant to be. He wants Franken to win ...

BLITZER: That's what he told you personally?

REID: who’s also Jewish.

BLITZER: Al Franken's Jewish, a Democrat. Norm Coleman is Jewish, a Republican. Arlen Specter's Jewish as a Republican. But what I hear you saying is that Arlen Specter personally has said to you he'd like Al Franken to win in Minnesota?

REID: He said that -- last night I came to him and I said, "Arlen, what's all this about?" He said, "I forgot what team I was on."

BLITZER: So it's just a slip, you think, that he was saying?

REID: That's what he told me, yes.

BLITZER: But he was actually quoted in "The New York Times."

REID: Well, I don't know about that. All I know is that was given to me last night, and I said, "Arlen, what's that all about?"

Arlen better wake up fast.

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