In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Specter: Schumer Has It Right On The Public Option

Before Specter switched parties this spring--and for a brief period afterward--he said he did not support the public option. But as a Democrat he's facing different pressures--notably from Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) who plans to challenge Specter in next year's primary--and he's begun tacking to the left as a result.

HCAN hosted today's event, which also included rallying, lobbying, and other town halls with members of Congress. The Pennsylvania forum--which also featured a Sestak appearance--was a standing-room only affair. Both the ground floor and the balcony levels of the Capitol City Brewing Company were filled seemingly beyond capacity, with many guests forced to sit on the staircase or stand in the nearby entryway to the National Postal Museum.

"Health care is a right," Specter said. "Your presence here has a big effect. You will get health care this year."

About The Author


Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at