IN-07: According to the Indianapolis Star, Democratic Rep. Julia Carson has committed herself to run for a sixth term in the House. I can’t say that I’m thrilled with this development. Carson, who has had the misfortune of dealing with a series of serious health issues during her tenure, has performed weakly in her last two campaigns against underfunded and low-profile challengers, despite occupying a district with a PVI of D+8.7. While Kerry won Indiana’s 7th by 16 points in 2004, Carson only won by a margin of 10. And while Democratic performance in Indiana’s eight other congressional districts surged between 2004 and 2006, Carson’s margin of victory slid to a mere 8 points, despite outspending her opponent by a lopsided margin and receiving DCCC assistance. This seat shouldn’t be in play, but as long as Carson is on the ballot, it will present a rare opportunity for House Republicans. (H/T: Blue Indiana)
While the Republican Party is currently home to some of the nuttiest policies of recent decades, it has also been home to some of the nuttiest people. Cranks, loons, shifty-eyed ramblers, hard luck gamblers, and certifiable basketcases alike have all found a welcome home as elected officials in the GOP.
As an example, you may remember Rep. Fred Heineman (NC-04), a one-term wonder from 1995-97, who professed that his congressional salary of $180,000 made him “lower middle class”:
Heineman made news in 1996 with his assertion that his $180,000 income made him lower-middle class. “When I see a first-class individual who makes $80,000 a year, he’s lower middle class,” Heineman said. “When I see someone who is making anywhere from $300,000 to $750,000 a year, that’s middle class. When I see anyone above that, that’s upper middle class.” (Raleigh News & Observer, 10/21/95)
Clearly a man with a firm grip on reality.
Of course, another favorite Republican nutjob is Rep. Barbara Cubin (WY-AL), whose record is one of utter batshittery and embarrassment, including one notable evening where she barked to a startled audience of GOP donors: “I know what Victoria’s Secret is. She’s a slut.” And who could forget her penchant for sharing penis-shaped cookies with her colleagues in the Wyoming legislature, or her infamous threat to slap her wheelchair-bound independent opponent after a debate last fall.
Who are some of your favorite Republican nutters? To be clear, I’m not asking for necessarily the most conservative, or the most mean-spirited policy-wise. I’m talking about loony quotes and behavior that reflect a serious personality flaw or detachment from everyday reality. Citations of direct quotes or descriptions of activities, with links if possible, are preferred. Post ’em in the comments.
We may be a little late to the party, but given that the Swing State Project stepped up to the plate thrice before on Blogosphere Day, I would be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to the fine folks at Actblue.com who are the beneficiaries of today’s blogosphere-wide fundraising event. SSP alumnus Tim Tagaris has more:
If you want to help support one of the most important pieces of progressive infrastructure on the net, please consider dropping some coin for the good folks at Actblue.
Can you believe it? Swing State stalwart James L. just finished his very last final exam of college and is about to graduate! Please wish him a hearty congratulations in the comments – and welcome to the real world, James!