Former Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter, who served the state for three decades and notably switched from the Republican Party to the Democrats in 2009 to help pass the Affordable Care Act by giving Democrats the necessary 60 votes in the Senate, has passed away due to complications from non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was 82.
On the difficult decision to switch parties, which ultimately cost him his senate seat, he said: “I believe that my duty is to follow my conscience and vote what I think is in the best interest of the country, and the political risks will have to abide.”
Interestingly enough, he was the chief architect of the Warren Commission’s controversial “single-bullet theory,” which said the same bullet that killed President Kennedy also wounded then-Texas Gov. John Connally.