Inside Politics

A look back at Sen. Arlen Specter's career

Sunday, October 14, 2012

A look back at the major events in the timeline of Former Sen. Arlen Specter's career in politics:

- 1959: Hired as an assistant district attorney in Philadelphia.

- 1964: Serves on the Warren Commission, which concludes that a lone assassin killed President John F. Kennedy.

- 1965: Runs successfully on Republican ticket for Philadelphia district attorney, even though he was a Democrat.

- 1967: Loses election for Philadelphia mayor.

- 1969: Elected to second term as district attorney.

- 1973: Loses bid for third term as district attorney.

- 1976: Loses GOP Senate primary.

- 1978: Loses GOP gubernatorial primary.

- 1980: Wins Pennsylvania's open U.S. Senate seat and joins new Republican majority in the chamber.

- 1986: Elected to second term in Senate.

- 1987: Helps defeat President Ronald Reagan's Supreme Court nomination of Robert H. Bork.

- 1991: Aggressively questions Anita Hill during Clarence Thomas' Supreme Court nomination hearing.

- 1992: Elected to third term in Senate.

- 1995: Announces candidacy for president. Suspends campaign later that year amid fundraising difficulties.

- 1998: Elected to fourth term in Senate.

- 2004: Ekes out win in Senate GOP primary, beating U.S. Rep. Pat Toomey by 17,146 votes, or 1.6 percentage points. Wins a fifth term in November.

- 2005: Begins two-year term as chairman of Senate Judiciary Committee.

- February 2009: Votes for Democrats' economic stimulus package, inflaming GOP sentiment against him.

- April 15, 2009: Toomey announces he will mount another challenge to Specter in 2010 Senate GOP primary.

- April 28, 2009: Specter announces he is changing party registration from Republican to Democrat.

- August 4, 2009: Democratic U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak announces his Senate candidacy.

- May 18, 2010: Sestak defeats Specter in Democratic Party primary.

- Dec. 22, 2010: Specter takes last vote in Senate.

- Jan. 3, 2011: Senate term ends.

- Oct. 19, 2011: In speech, Specter blames the tea party for removing GOP moderates, says Washington gridlock has become "like a war."

-Aug. 28, 2012: Confirms that he is battling cancer again, calls it "another battle I intend to win."

-Oct. 14, 2012: Son confirms Specter's death at his Philadelphia home of complications of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

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philadelphia, sen. arlen specter, inside politics
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