The Majority Leader Race, Where Wings Take Dream!

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All the cool kids are quoting bloggers, but I'll quote Rep. Ray LaHood:

"I can't believe they are self-destructing before they even get started," said Representative Ray LaHood, Republican of Illinois. "Everyone on our side is giddy."

The House Democrats' battle for the new majority leader slot, which should end in less than an hour, is the kind of thing that'll be forgotten completely in a month or so. The tactics of John Murtha and Steny Hoyer have been interesting, though, for their use and abuse of media. Hoyer has run his campaign the way these things are run; talking mostly to Democrats, staying away from big media statements. Murtha has run his campaign like—well, unless he wins—like an amateur. He's wasted time on Hardball arguing why he deserves a job that only 230 people are going to vote for (Chris Matthews not one of them). He's issued angry press releases for, again, people outside DC won't determine. He's dispatched allies to blog on the Huffington Post.

I had thought the Republicans' leadership races would be more interesting than the Democrats, as the last time they held an election candidate John Shadegg did some courting of the blogs, then lost. I don't know if there's an actual trend here (leadership elections don't happen all that often, anyway), but it seems like the birth of blogs and the activation of hundreds of thousands of partisans—whom politicians can spur to make phone calls, send e-mails, etc—might have changed the way even backroom deals get done in Washington.

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  1. “The House Democrats’ battle for the new majority leader slot, which should end in less than an hour, is the kind of thing that’ll be forgotten completely in a month or so.”

    You’re being generous. I give it less than a week.

  2. Glen Reynolds is a “cool kid?”

    Heh. Indeed.

  3. Hoyer won.

    Pelosi loses her first major battle as Speaker, and it was a purely internal vote in her caucus. Weird.

  4. This chalks up the second one-trick Iraq Basher who falls to a seasoned, centrist Democrat.

    Heh heh

  5. Mr. Nice Guy

    My impression from NPR this AM is that Dems were concerned more with Murtha’s ethics problems than with his position on Iraq.

  6. That Republican comment is about as self-serving a detour from reality as Mehlman’s claim that primary voting was down. So… wow: the new Democratic House had an election for top positions, and some positions had more than one candidate?

    HOLY CRAP! That’s mindboggling! The Dems are self-destructing for sure!

    Meanwhile, it’s not like the House Republicans are having any disputes over their leadership, right?

    I mean, Martinez, Lott, and the vicious battle to re-elect the same boobs that got the Republicans into this mess in the first place: that isn’t really happenning, right?

  7. “Everyone on our side is giddy.”

    Still drinking the kool aid. What Ray LaHood was really thinking: The entire country just bitch slapped us after 12 years, but there is a minor squabble about Dem leadership positions that I think I can use to cover the stench of my own crap stained ass.

  8. How bad is it for the Republicans?

    The fact that the Democrats had a contested leadership race – one which ended amicably and will never be heard about again – is described as “making them giddy.”

    Why, this is the greatest triumph for the Republican Party since only ONE top White House official was indicated by the prosecutor investigating the blowing of a CIA agent’s cover!

    Not two, ONE! In your face, Defeatocrats!

    No, wait, this is the greates triumph for Republicans since Democratic economic populists took six Senate away from them last week. Ha! They’re slightly different kinds of liberals – much more popular ones, who connect better with people who normally vote Republican – than some of the Democrats who currently hold office! HA! Take THAT!

    Tell you what, Ray LaHood – even after the Murtha/Hoyer contest, I’d still rather be us than you.

  9. Bad day for the Republicans. It won’t be as easy to kick around the Democrats with someone besides Murtha as the majority leader.

    Great day for the country. The further Murtha is away from power the better off we are.

  10. The House Democrats’ battle for the new majority leader slot, which should end in less than an hour, is the kind of thing that’ll be forgotten completely in a month or so.

    A whole month? I’ll give anyone on this thread 3:1 odds that no one remembers it past the final seconds of the Ohio State – Michigan game. And that’s for people with really long memories.

  11. “A whole month? I’ll give anyone on this thread 3:1 odds that no one remembers it past the final seconds of the Ohio State – Michigan game. And that’s for people with really long memories.”

    They might remember it a second or two longer than people remember who the Republicans voted majority whip, whatever that is. In all seriousness, what the hell is a whip? I love the way political geeks, myself included, get wrapped up in this stuff pretending that anyone in the country outside the people involved care.

  12. They might remember the Republican whip contest a bit longer since it was won by Trent Lott, of all people.

  13. Sure, Murtha had that whole “I won’t take your bribe NOW… but let’s get to know each other”, but I’m going to stick with his Iraq position, which is for immediate withdraw.

    The centrist Dems capitalized on the moonbat Sheehans, and talked the talk to get them to pull the levers for them. But deep down, the Dems know that immediate retreat would be a total humanitarian disaster (granted, it’s not great to begin with). It’s only a handful of moonbats, like Pelosi and Murtha, who genuinely believe this is the best course of action. And they will be kept to side.

    The Dems are going to keep chugging along here and blaming Bush every step of the way. I would be very surprised if there were to be any significant “redeployment” (i.e. retreat) from Iraq any time soon.

  14. Since the President is Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, with unreviewable authority to command troop movements and dispositions, yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was no signifcant redeployment, either.

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