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Many Familiar Faces To Depart Capitol Hill After '06 Election

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The anti-GOP wave that struck D.C. two weeks ago resulted in 22 Republican U.S. House incumbents being given their 2-month notice. This turnover, while quite high by historical standards, is perhaps not as remarkable as the fact that most of these incumbents had served their districts for a decade or more and had cruised to victory in 2004.

Eighty-one percent of these incumbents (17) enjoyed double-digit victories in 2004 and sixty-two percent (13) of them won by at least 20 points in the previous election cycle. Fourteen of these incumbents also had served at least 10 consecutive years in the U.S. House. The departing incumbents are:

PA-10. Donald Sherwood (4-term). 92-point negative turnaround from 2004.
TX-23. Henry Bonilla (7-term). 47-point turnaround.
NY-20. John Sweeney (4-term). 38-point turnaround.
NY-19. Sue Kelly (6-term). 36-point turnaround.
CT-05. Nancy Johnson (12-term). 34-point turnaround.
FL-22. Eugene Clay Shaw (13-term). 32-point turnaround.
PA-07. Curt Weldon (10-term). 31-point turnaround.
MN-01. Gil Gutknecht (6-term). 31-point turnaround.
PA-04. Melissa Hart (3-term). 31-point turnaround.
IN-08. John Hostettler (6-term). 30-point turnaround.
NH-01. Jeb Bradley (2-term). 30-point turnaround.
CA-11. Richard Pombo (7-term). 28-point turnaround.
NH-02. Charles Bass (6-term). 28-point turnaround.
AZ-05. J.D. Hayworth (6-term). 27-point turnaround.
KY-03. Anne Northrup (5-term). 25-point turnaround.
IA-02. James Leach (15-term). 22-point turnaround.
KS-02. Jim Ryun (5-term). 19-point turnaround.
NC-11. Charles Taylor (8-term). 18-point turnaround.
IN-02. Chris Chocola (2-term). 17-point turnaround.
PA-08. Mike Fitzpatrick (1-term). 13-point turnaround.
CT-02. Robert Simmons (3-term). 8-point turnaround.
IN-09. Michael Sodrel (1-term). 4-point turnaround.

Of particular note is that 11 incumbents incurred a 30+ point turnaround from the previous election cycle (scandal-plagued Donald Sherwood hadn't even faced a Democratic challenger in 2004 or 2002).

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1 Comment


  • It serves them right, all these rubber-stamping Bush puppets. What went wrong, was it the money sliding under the door, was it the power, was it the threat of turning up missing? How can these great politicians live in such fear?

    The only way to stop the corruption is to secure for decades the majority and ask questions, not just pass bills when they have not even been read or understood. Restore the bill of rights and control these "out-of-control" spy agencies.

    If Bush continues to implement things that 80% of America is against he will give the democrats the edge they need to take further windfalls in the 08 election. But what does he care, America will find out that hundreds of billions of tax dollars are missing and many pockets are full including the pockets of the entire Bush family.

    We got burned, not only by bad politics but by political thieves.

  • Leave a comment


    Remains of the Data

    Who Has Won the Most Votes in US Senate Electoral History?

    Only three of the Top 10 and nine of the Top 50 vote-getters of all time are currently serving in the chamber.

    Political Crumbs

    Six for Thirteen

    Collin Peterson remarked last month that he is leaning to run for reelection to Minnesota's 7th Congressional District in 2016. If he does and is victorious, he will creep even closer to the top of the list of the longest-serving U.S. Representatives in Minnesota history. The DFL congressman is only the sixth Minnesotan to win at least 13 terms to the U.S. House of the 135 elected to the chamber in state history. Peterson trails 18-term DFLer Jim Oberstar (1975-2011), 16-term Republicans Harold Knutson (1917-1949) and August Andresen (1925-1933; 1935-1958), and 14-term DFLers Martin Sabo (1979-2007) and John Blatnik (1947-1974). Andresen died in office, Sabo and Blatnik retired, and Knutson and Oberstar were defeated at the ballot box in 1948 and 2010 respectively. At 70 years, 7 months, 11 days through Monday, Peterson is currently the ninth oldest Gopher State U.S. Representative in history. DFLer Rick Nolan of the 8th CD is the seventh oldest at 71 years, 1 month, 23 days.


    Seeing Red

    Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


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