Specter and EFCA

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April 28, 2009 9:02 a.m.

Grover Norquist tells the Washington Independent that it’s not all bad news: Specter had already come out against EFCA (i.e., “card check”) and in his statement this morning he reaffirms his opposition.

It’s easy to have a laugh at Grover’s expense, sort of whistling past the grave. But he’s not all wrong. In retrospect, securing Specter’s opposition to EFCA was a much bigger coup than it seemed at the time. In his heart of hearts, since he supported EFCA in the previous Congress, I’m pretty confident Specter wishes he hadn’t made that promise. But switching now would just seem too craven (it’s one thing to flip-flop but to flip-flop and then flip again …) even on this day which — as cool as it is for Dems — certainly has a decent cravenness quotient.

The real issue I suspect will be cloture. Labor support in Pennsylvania has always been critical for Specter. And this won’t go down well at all. But his wiggle room will be cloture. If he will vote for cloture and let EFCA come to a straight majority vote, I suspect labor supporters will hold their nose and throw in their grudging support.

Of course, you also have to figure into the mix that, unfortunately, since Specter’s announcement earlier in the spring, a number of Dems have come out signaling that they’re at least not inclined to support EFCA this year.

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