Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sops

Glenn Thrush reports: "Senate majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is offering Arlen Specter a sop after leadership stripped Specter of his seniority -- the chairmanship of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs, according to a senior Democratic aide." I don't know what Specter's views on crime and drug-related issues are, but if they're reasonable and it makes him happy enough that he doesn't start causing trouble that's fine with me. (I don't mind if he causes high-profile but low-cost trouble that helps a real Democrat beat him in the primary, like when he cheered on Norm Coleman. I'm worried about him causing low-profile but high-cost trouble that the good Democrats of Pennsylvania can't easily detect.)

On a side note, I've always found the word "sop" kind of funny. I've only seen it used in the third-person way that Thrush uses it, when somebody else doesn't get what they really want and is offered something lesser as a consolation. I don't know if you're allowed to use it first-personally or second-personally, as follows:
Durbin: Sorry, Arlen, we can't suddenly make you an incredibly senior Democrat.

Specter: Darn it! I can't keep my seniority... can I have a sop?

Durbin: All right, I'll give you a sop. How about this bread soaked in some liquid?

Specter: I don't want that.

Durbin: [Eating] Mmm. Well, how about letting you chair the Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs.

Specter: Okay, that's a reasonably good sop.
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