What Were the 17 Anti-Holder Democrats Thinking?
Despicable, pathetic, myopic,” reads one Daily Kos post. “Every Democratic Rep. who voted for the contempt resolution should be a target for replacement in the coming years until they’ve all been retired. If they cannot be counted on to stand with fellow Democrats on a matter of principle so fundamental, how exactly is it that they fit in the Big Tent?”
Well, where do they fit in? And what are the politics behind a vote so blatantly cuts against the administration’s interests?
For one thing, most of the 17 are Democrats who live on the edge, or behind red state enemy lines. Not a single one of them could be characterized as safe in November. A handful have already said they won’t be attending the Democratic National Convention.
There are no East or West Coast Democrats on the list; many are Blue Dogs who represent culturally conservative districts that range from slightly to comfortably Republican. When the National Rifle Association decided to score the vote, the die was cast - the NRA is an important force in many of those places.
President Barack Obama will be a significant drag on most of these members in November: 12 of the 17 districts voted for John McCain in 2008.