Specter plans vote against card-check legislation, threatening bill's passage

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Nursing homes likely are cheering after Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) said Tuesday he would vote against the Employee Free Choice Act, also known as the card-check bill. His veto could effectively end the bill's chance at passing.

Specter was the only Republican senator to support the Employee Free Choice Act during the last round of voting, and would be key to a Democratic triumph in the Senate. If, however, Specter votes against cloture on the bill, which would end debate and send the measure to the floor for a straight up-or-down majority vote, the Republican minority can claim victory. The bill would make it easier for unions to form by eliminating the requirement of a secret ballot election. Nursing homes oppose the measure.

Democratic leaders in the Senate remained steadfast in their resolve to pass the measure, despite Specter's decision. Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) suggested Specter made his decision based on political expediency, and that the bill is still alive, Politico.com reported.