Politics

Arlen Specter loses it on conservative talk radio show

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Jeff Poor
Media Reporter

Former Sen. Arlen Specter experienced a meltdown of Pennsylvanian proportions on a talk radio show Friday while promoting his new book, “Life Among the Cannibals.”

The Republican-turned-Democrat hasn’t been particularly welcomed by conservative radio hosts during his promotional book tour. Rusty Humphries, whose show airs on Atlanta’s 640AM-WGST, even mocked Specter a bit during his appearance on his show. But on Jason Lewis’ nationally syndicated show Friday, Specter threw an Obamacare-sized tantrum after he had to sit through two commercial breaks.

“Jason, I have one final comment,” Specter said.

“I gave you 10 minutes. You’ve been over every subject except for my book. I’ve listened to two rounds of your commercials. I think it’s insulting. I’ve been in a lot of interviews in the course of the past 30 years and you are absolutely insulting!”

Specter’s on-air tirade didn’t stop there. “This is no way to run an interview!” he said.

“Listen, I’m talking about somebody who’s civilized!” Specter added.

“I told you the last time around I wasn’t looking to sit around and listen to your commercials, and I didn’t want to hang up on you. But I want to tell you this is no way for anybody to run an interview. I’m as experienced as you are, if not more so. And that’s all I have to tell you, so goodbye!”

And with that, Specter hung up.

Lewis reacted to Specter’s tirade by suggesting Specter’s behavior helped explain why he was defeated in the 2010 Pennsylvania Democratic Senate primary to then- Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak. (Sestak ultimately lost to Republican Pat Toomey in the general election.)

“Good lord, senator — no wonder you got beat,” Lewis said.

“This is the most intolerant guest I’ve ever had on the program. How on earth do you — Does he only do NPR interviews? Is that the deal? I’ve never heard anything like it. Well, good luck with the book. I think you’re going to need it.”

Lewis is right about the former senator needing “luck” with his new book. As of Sunday afternoon, Specter’s tome was ranked 3,066th on Amazon.com‘s book sales chart, and 1,369th on Barnesandnoble.com.

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