U.S. House of Representatives
In the aftermath of the best electoral night for the Republicans since the age of flappers, I thought I would share a few reflections on some of the common memes that have sprouted up over the past 24 hours.
Evidently at about 4 in the morning CNN was running with a headline on their website that read “Split Decision.” Even less hopeless cases pondered why the GOP seemingly didn’t do as well in the Senate as it did in the House. While it’s true that there were some disappointing results in Nevada, Colorado, and West Virginia, the fact of the matter is the Republicans won 25 of the 37 contested Senatorial contests. Republicans had to defend 19 of their own seats and then win an additional ten in order to gain majority control of the Senate, a rather long-shot proposition to begin with. As it is the Republicans won two-thirds of all Senate contests, lost none of their own seats and picked up six in the process. That would be a good night by any measure. Continue reading
John Patrick “Jack” Murtha, Jr. died Wednesday morning at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, VA, after complications from gallbladder surgery. Murtha was 77.
Congressman Murtha was a Democrat with a relatively populist economic outlook, and is generally much more socially conservative than most other House Democrats. He is opposed to abortion, consistently receiving a 0% rating from NARAL and 70% rating from National Right to Life Committee; however, he supports embryonic stem cell research. He generally opposes gun control, earning an A from the National Rifle Association. Murtha was also one of the few Democrats in Congress to vote against the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 and also one of the few Democrats to vote in favor of medical malpractice tort reform.
May he rest in peace.
 Fox News entry by Chad Pergram.
 Wikipedia entry for John Murtha, Political Views
Last night all but one, who voted present, of the House Republicans voted in favor of the Stupak Amendment in spite of knowing that its passage made likely the final passage of ObamaCare. Here is a statement of the House Republican Leadership issued last night before either the Stupak amendment or ObamaCare was passed:
House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH), House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-IN) issued the following statement in support of an amendment offered by Representatives Bart Stupak (D-MI) and Joseph Pitts (R-PA) that would prohibit federal funding of abortions under the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) health care plan: “We believe in the sanctity of life, and the Stupak-Pitts Amendment addresses a moral issue of the utmost concern. It will limit abortion in the United States. Because of this, while we strongly and deeply oppose the underlying bill, we decided to stand with Life and support Stupak-Pitts.