The House of Murtha

Last week I noted that anti-war Democrat John Murtha was breezing past a pro-war challenger - and that this bespoke a nice trend in areas that had supported the Iraq war and voted for George W. Bush (Murtha's district narrowly, 51-49, voted for Kerry, making it a target). Soon thereafter I started getting e-mails about an internal poll from the pro-war Republican's campaign, which showed her a mere 10 points behind Murtha. The Powerline dudes summed up the findings:

Pennsylvania has never been a hotbed of anti-Americanism and defeatism. Go here to donate to candidate Diana Irey. Who knows, she just might win!

Today there's an independent poll commissioned by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review - a paper owned by the Scaife family and expected to endorse Irey. It finds that Murtha's anti-war stance is actually leading him to a crushing win.

Murtha leads Irey 57 percent to 30 percent, according to the survey of 400 voters. Eleven percent of those polled were undecided, 1 percent said they will not vote and 1 percent did not respond when asked for whom they would vote.

In a race defined by the war in Iraq, the results indicate voters agree with Murtha, who has called for withdrawal of troops, rather than Irey, who insists America should stay the course... Thirty percent of respondents identified the war as the most important problem facing the country today, while 11 percent listed the economy, jobs and unemployment as more important.

Fifty-six percent of those questioned said America is less safe today because of the war in Iraq, compared to 27 percent who feel the country is safer. Ten percent indicated the country's level of safety has not changed, while 6 percent said they are undecided and 1 percent declined to answer the question.

There's very, very, very little that should endear libertarians to a New Deal liberal like Murtha. But if support for the war has melted down in areas like southwest Pennsylvania, it's melted down everywhere. And it's nice to see a campaign running on a 2002-style "He doesn't want to stay in Iraq! He hates the troops!" platform, and hitting the reef.

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  • ||

    And it's nice to see a campaign running on a 2002-style "He doesn't want to stay in Iraq! He hates the troops!" platform, and hitting the reef.

    Agreed. I've noticed even my most (usually vocal) conservative friends have pretty much shut the hell up on just about everything they were yammering about in 2004. But it's one thing to avoid the topics...they don't even slam liberals. It's like they avoid politics altogether.

  • ||

    There's very, very, very little that should endear libertarians to a New Deal liberal like Murtha.

    Indeed. He may be opposed to watching our young men and women die for nothing, but on the other hand he might raise the minimum wage. So this one is sort of a toss-up for Libs.

  • ||

    If the Powerline dudes had a little more firepower above the neck, they might draw a conclusion about the juxtaposition of their phrase "Pennsylvania has never been a hotbed of anti-Americanism and defeatism," with the imminent victory of the country's most notable advocate of withdrawal from Iraq.

    But they don't, and they won't.

  • ||

    He may be opposed to watching our young men and women die for nothing, but on the other hand he might raise the minimum wage. So this one is sort of a toss-up for Libs.

    I lack the ability to utter sentences like this with a straight face, which is why I'm a libertarian and not a Libertarian.

  • ||

    I lack the ability to utter sentences like this with a straight face, which is why I'm a libertarian and not a Libertarian.

    Me thinks it was a bit o' sarcasm.

  • ||

    I'm betting AlanB. was not being completely serious. Anyone who seriously equates raising the minimum wage with sending people to die unnecessarily probably belongs in a padded room.

  • Doctor Biobrain||

    What is wrong with people that they see the admission of reality as "anti-Americanism and defeatism"? Can there be any doubt that these people solely support the war for propaganda purposes, and that they really don't care about what's really happening or what our best options really are?

    And to be honest, I think their plan is to "stay the course" until a Democrat wins the Whitehouse in 2008 and starts withdrawing the troops; so they can blame the defeat on them and continue to crow for decades about how Dems lost the war that Bush was winning. I'm sure they're secretly kicking themselves that they hadn't waited to foist Vietnam on to Carter, who as we all know is already history's greatest monster. Imagine if they could have blamed Nam on him too.

  • ||

    The fact Murtha has not written talking points about the war that all Democrats use shows Howard Dean is incompetent.

  • ||

    2002-style "He doesn't want to stay in Iraq! He hates the troops!" platform

    I'll never understand the twisted logic needed to think that keeping troops in war zone is supporting them, and wanting to bring them home to their families isn't. Not that any of these polical cocksuckers care about anything other scoring points to get themselves or their candidates elected.

  • ||

    2002-style "He doesn't want to stay in Iraq! He hates the troops!" platform

    I'll never understand the twisted logic needed to think that keeping troops in war zone is supporting them, and wanting to bring them home to their families isn't. Not that any of these political cocksuckers care about anything other scoring points to get themselves or their candidates elected.

  • ||

    I think AlanB. was being sarcastic too. On the other hand I'm not sure about David Weigel. He doesn't think that there is "very little" to endear Murtha to the Libs, or ever "very, very little," but "very, very, very little." Three times makes it an incantation. Apparently there is something in the positions of even the most conservative Dem (I live about a mile from the edge of his district, he's about as conservative as Dems get) that makes them pretty close to impossible to vote for under all but the most remarkable circumstances.

  • ||

    AlanB:

    Go for Murtha. The bad decisions that he may make are usually reversible. There is no way to reverse being blown up in Irak....

  • ||

    It's hard to draw a conclusion about the American public based on the popularity of a local politician. Look at California--a bit more populous than Murtha's district. They're going to vote in Arnold again. Does that mean the state, or even the country, is trending Republican?

    And yes, telling the troops, who by and large support the war, that they're dying in vain, is being against them.

  • ||

    And yes, telling the troops, who by and large support the war, that they're dying in vain, is being against them.

    http://www.zogby.com/NEWS/ReadNews.dbm?ID=1075

    Even the troops are against the troops!

  • ||

    Murtha wants us to lose. Murtha thinks only people who served in the military should comment on military/foreign policey.
    Murtha thinks Okiniwa is just over the horizon from Iraq.
    You Weigel support this jerk, confirming my suspicions about you.
    You are not a real libertarian, your a jerk and a traitor.
    You may not like the war but it would be worse if we withdraw, one of the reasons is that it would give senile Murtha credibility and thus more power and thus more crooked government.
    Your a schmuck Weigel, a real schumuck.

  • ||

    Y"ou may not like the war but it would be worse if we withdraw, one of the reasons is that it would give senile Murtha credibility and thus more power and thus more crooked government."

    There we have it. Not even a sentence break.

    Don't worry, Larry, nobody thinks the troops are dying in vain.

    They're dying to keep Republicans from having to cede power to Democrats.

  • ||

    Withdraw now or withdraw in 5-10 years, the only real difference will be the number of coalition troops dead and the amount of money wasted. Why do these pro-war retards want to keep throwing troops into the meatgrinder? Besides, aren't there now a hundred bazillion Iraqi police? Can't they take over security soon?

  • ||

    Another reason L/libertarians probably don't like Murtha too much is that he is generally pro-war--he's just anti-Iraq war in its current incarnation. When it comes to Pentagon pork, Murtha is a repeat offender.

    That said, I'm just shocked that Assrocket et al were wrong.

  • ||

    Zogby polls? Spare me. His methodology is designed to get certain answers when it comes to these isses. In any case, a lot of troops are unhappy with Iraq because we're not fighting hard enough. Whenever they get to vote, they vote for the pro-war side.

    "Withdraw now or withdraw in 5-10 years, the only real difference will be the number of coalition troops dead and the amount of money wasted."

    I couldn't sum up any better why the anti-war side doesn't have a clue as to what's going on.

    By the way, Lieberman just keeps clobberng Lamont in the polls. By Wiegel's logic, that proves Americans actually support the war.

  • ||

    "Whenever they get to vote, they vote for the pro-war side."

    But not, apparently, whenever they get to run for office.

  • ||

    "I couldn't sum up any better why the anti-war side doesn't have a clue as to what's going on."

    Sure, if recent history proves anything, its that the Iraq war cheerleaders are the only ones that have a clue about "whats going on." I mean, there's not really an insurgency in Iraq, is there?

  • ||

    "I couldn't sum up any better why the anti-war side doesn't have a clue as to what's going on."

    Sure Larry, if recent history proves anything, its that the Iraq war cheerleaders are the only ones that have a clue about "whats going on." I mean, there's not really an insurgency in Iraq, is there?

  • ||

    "Murtha wants us to lose"

    Your wrong, plain and simple. No one in this country "wants" us to lose. That is a myth created by the neocons and supporters to "paint" a picture for those who love to hate, and blame others for their plan falling apart.

    It is clear that you have no desire to understand the issues or you would understand that Muthra has many, many friends that are high up in the military. These friends have discussed things with Muthra that are off the record. Muthra's opinion was developed by listening to those serving in Iraq. He is an insider and everything he has said was, or is true. Not because he's a brilliant person, but because he has inside information that you or I do not have access too. Information that Bush and right wingers do not want to admit, but that is or has been, painfully obvious to many of us.

    When Muthra stated we were not winning, you probably claimed he was a defeatist, a term you learned from the Rove/Libby camp. Yet was was RIGHT! We are not going to defeat the enemy the Iraq, period, no matter what you think. Rumsfield has stated such and the General in charge of the Anbar provience as publicly stated that it's not his job to fight the enemy but to train Iraqis to fight the enemy. Winning is something that is in the hands of the Iraqis, not ours. That is not my point of view, it has been stated as such publicly by the Bush administration.

    When Muthra claimed the military was overstreched and affecting the troops, you probably had something bad to say about him then too. But, now it's no longer disputed by military brass. Only a few rightwing hold outs believe otherwise.

    When Muthra claimed that the above was affecting troops to the point it caused Marines, (which he cares deeply about) to misbehave in Haditha. I'm sure you stood on the ground that he is wrong because it is wrong to assume guilt, but you probably don't have a problem when Bush assumes guilt with people you don't like. Yet, Muthra had already talked to some of the people investigating that act and had their report before it was printed. Muthra is not happy with that incident. Not because he hates the Marines involved, that stupid to promote. But, because he feels the Marines actions were a result of the pressures created by long and mulitple deployments. He is blaming not the Marines for their actions as much as he's blaming the Bush administrations handling the war. But I'm sure that's not good enough for you.


    If you want to respect the troops, then respect a 37 year decorated vet. He has already fought for his country. You OWE him some respect! We all do. I guess your more concerned with partisanship in uniform, only respecting those who served that agree with you. Hell I respect Bush's short time in the Guard, regardless if he "completed" his tour or not.

    By reading what Muthra has had to say, instead of listening to what "others" claim he says, I quickly came to the understanding that his point of view was one of time to "shit or get off the pot". With full knowledge that Bush would not listen to anyone and was hellbent on "staying the course" "shitting" was not a option, therefore the only option left is to "get off the pot". In case you haven't figured it out, Marines don't like to stand and flounder. We like to win and we damn pissed off when we are don't.

    Of course you probably disagree with my total respect for anyone who served in uniform. I don't give a rats ass if they screwed up, are gay, Democrat, Republican or what. I don't care about creed, race, class, or anything else.I respect the time they served for their country, our country. Period, first and foremost because I have worn the uniform, secondly because that what a good citizen does. Unlike those who have convinced otherwise.

    I think O'Reilly has apologized to Muthra. It's probably time for you to do the same.

    I can't stand it when people wave an American flag while pissing on a man who served!!!!!!
    Damn hypocritical!!!

  • ||

    There's very, very, very little that should endear libertarians to a New Deal liberal like Murtha. But if support for the war has melted down in areas like southwest Pennsylvania, it's melted down everywhere.

    GAH! I told you last week that MURTHA HASN'T LOST AN ELECTION IN DECADES! I'm FROM that area!

    Support for the war in his district is a complete non-issue. He has overwhelming support for various other reasons, including his strong support for unions (this is a region dominated by mining and manufacturing interests, particularly steel).

    Honestly, I don't support the war in Iraq either, but if you're looking for a particular example to show that opposition to the war is not hurting a candidate, why not pick one who isn't so assured of victory because of other reasons?

    People from that area hold their union membership so dear that virtually no candidate without serious union endorsement has even a small chance there. Murtha has more than established his union support, and so any candidate even thinking about challenging him is virtually choosing to fight a battle up the side of El Capitan.

  • ||

    Shorter Terry:

    In America, first you get the senility, then you get the power, then you get the women. Meng.

  • ||

    db,
    You people from that area, are you born stupid or do you have to suck up five years of coal dust first?
    Murtha was caught on tape by the FBI postponing a bribe.
    His brother is a "loybbist" with a yearly income exceeding 500,000.00, lobbying for companies who have business in front of Murtha's committees.
    You people are sleazy, gypsy like beggars.
    You stink.

  • ||

    Terry:

    You are an ass.

    That said, in Murtha's region, they vote their short-term pocketbooks.

  • ||

    db,
    What facts do you have that I am an ass?
    NONE.
    What facts do I have your a sleaze bag, idiot?
    You come from a place that votes for Murtha.

  • ||

    What facts do we have that Terry is an annoying troll with a tenuous grasp of the English language?

  • ||

    Shem, I am working when I post.
    Do you know what 'work' is Shem?

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