Wednesday, May 5, 2010

David Obey retires

Did you hear all that loud clucking today? That was David Obey (D-WI) chickening out of the 2010 election. He claims he was “bone tired”, however polls indicated he was going to get his ass handed to him. 
Politico: In a major blow to Democrats, House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey has told close associates that he will not seek re-election and an announcement of his plans is expected as early as Wednesday.
The Wisconsin Democrat faces tough poll numbers at home, but until Tuesday night his staff had insisted he was running aggressively and had hired campaign staff. But a person close to him confirmed the decision to POLITICO Wednesday and said Obey was preparing to make a statement. …
Obey’s frustration with the White House has been no secret either, and his unhappiness helps explain the repeated delays in the House over moving ahead with new funding for the war in Afghanistan. He himself is torn about the President Barack Obama’s commitment of increased U.S. troops at a time of continued economic troubles at home. And after first setting a Memorial Day deadline, Democrats admit privately that Congress may not complete action on the package until the July Fourth recess.
The combination of his retirement—and Murtha’s death—means a major change in the hierarchy of the Appropriations panel itself. And if Democrats retain power, Rep. Norman Dicks (D—Wash) will be pushed to the forefront after serving until recently as chairman of the Interior and natural resources subcommittee, overseeing one of the smaller of the dozen annual bills.
Once again another Democrat has denied the people their revenge at the polls. All the better, 41 years is way too long for anyone to remain a House Rep. How could the man possibly be in touch with the real world after so much time in the public sector? The Democrats are now scrambling to find someone for run in Obey’s place. Obey’s Republican challenger, Sean Duffy, now has a better than fair chance of getting elected.

Ed Morrissey over at Hot Air, sees Obeys unexpected retirement as a very bad omen for House Democrats. 
When committee chairs retire, it usually means they don’t expect to remain committee chairs for very much longer.  When an Appropriations Committee chair retires — a position considered one of the pinnacles of Congressional power — then that goes double.   
Via: Hot Air

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