PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – For Arlen Specter, it’s a time to reflect, plan a book and do some broadcasting.

For Specter, elections have always been tough. He never had an easy re-election campaign and he explains why:

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“It was because I was independent and because I called each vote on the basis of what I thought was good for the state and country. I didn’t mind ruffling feathers. That made it controversial and tough.”

Specter served under five Presidents. Who was the best?

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“President Reagan, he undertook negotiations with the Soviet Union and started us on a path for arms reduction. I had a lot of contacts with President Reagan and he was terrific up close and he was terrific at a distance.”

From his own future, to the single bullet theory with JFK to Clarence Thomas and all the politics he endured.

Listen to the extended interview with Senator Specter:

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Reported By Special Contributor Larry Kane, KYW Newsradio.