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No is not Enough when You are in a Primary

Pat Toomey isn’t quite giving up the job of bird-dogging Arlen Specter. He put out a statement:

When Senator Specter does a flip flop, it’s worth checking the fine print.  On the senate floor today he said:  “I would be willing to reconsider Employees’ Free Choice legislation when the economy returns to normalcy.”

But Specter didn’t exactly say that. Yes, he left a crack open for EFCA, but it is a very conditional crack:

The problems of the recession make this a particularly bad time to enact Employees Free Choice legislation. Employers understandably complain that adding a burden would result in further job losses. If efforts are unsuccessful to give Labor sufficient bargaining power through amendments to the NLRA, then I would be willing to reconsider Employees’ Free Choice legislation when the economy returns to normalcy.

In other words, the economy has to get better, other measures have to be implemented, that would fail to give unions “sufficient bargaining power,” in order for him to reconsider the EFCA. It’s not exactly an airtight “buzz off” but he is basically telling Big Labor not to count on him — for a good long time.

What we do know from this scuffle, however, is that Toomey isn’t giving up his primary race options quite yet.