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05.06.2009 Congressional Update
05.06.2009
Capitol Hill has been abuzz with political maneuvering in the past few weeks. The senior senator from Pennsylvania, longtime Republican Arlen Specter, announced his retreat from the Republican Party to join the Democratic caucus. Specter’s move represents a shift in the dynamic for filibuster requirements for the Senate, meaning that his assumed party vote gives Democrats a 59-vote majority, just one away from the total 60 needed to avoid a filibuster. The ongoing election debacle in Minnesota with Sen. Norm Coleman (R) and candidate Al Franken (D) will determine the presumed 60th vote. Specter’s switch comes amid speculation that he would have slim chances at winning reelection in the Republican primary in his home state of Pennsylvania. He will now run for his sixth term in office on the Democratic ticket in 2010.

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