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Senators Harkin and Feingold Don't View Terrorist Threat In Iraq To Be In U.S. National Security Interest

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In one of many votes held during a late night session on Capitol Hill Tuesday night, the U.S. Senate overwhelming passed an amendment expressing:

The sense of the Senate that it is in the national security interest of the United States that Iraq not become a failed state and a safe haven for terrorists.

The Amendment (S 2100) passed by a 94-3 vote. Wisconsin junior Senator Russ Feingold voted against the symbolic amendment; Feingold has been a vocal opponent of the Iraq conflict since well before the U.S. launched military operations in Spring 2003.

Also voting against the amendment were two key members of the Democratic Senate leadership: President Pro Tempore Robert Byrd of West Virginia and Iowa Senator (and Assistant Majority Leader) Tom Harkin. With Harkin up for re-election in 2008, this is the kind of vote that might appear in negative television ads run by his to-be-determined Republican opponent to portray Harkin as soft on national security and the war on terror.

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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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