Updated, 4:55 a.m. Eastern. Nov 25:
While the win-loss tally for the Gitmo switchers was close to an even split, the Democrats lost the House and their vote to bring terrorists into U.S. federal courts for trial contributed to that loss.
In addition, a significant number of House Democrats who consistently voted to bring Gitmo detainees to the U.S. were defeated. They are:
Joe Sestak, PA-7, lost to Pat Toomey in the PA Senate race.
Bob Etheridge, NC-2, lost to Renee Ellmers
John Spratt, SC-5, lost to Mike Mulvaney
Rich Boucher, VA-9, lost to Morgan Griffith
Scott Murphy, NY-20, lost to Christopher Gibson
Steven Kagen, WI-8, lost to Reid Ribble
Phil Hare, IL-17, lost to Robert Schilling
James Oberstar, MN-8, lost to Chip Chavaack
Travis Childers, MS-1, lost to Alan Nunnelee
Gene Taylor, MS-4, lost to Steve Palazzo
Chet Edwards, TX-17, lost to Bill Flores
Ciro Rodriguez, TX-23, lost to Francisco Canseco
John Salazar, CO-3, lost to Scott Tipton
Steve Driehaus, OH-1, lost to Steve Chabot
Solomon Ortiz, TX-27, lost to Blake Farenthold
So far, 41 Democrats who voted on October 15, 2009 to bring Gitmo detainees to the U.S. for trial have lost their congressional races. There remains one undecided race (NY-1).
Original Post, October 31, 2010, 7:11 AM:
President Barack Obama has indicated he will again attempt to bring Khalid Sheikh Mohammed into the U.S. for a federal trial after the midterm elections. The good news is the House Armed Services Committee cut off the funding this past spring when poll after poll showed a strong majority of the American people are opposed to the plan. If the House shifts to a Republican majority, it is unlikely the funding will be restored. We will be watching for the reelection results of those Democrats who first voted, in a non-binding vote on October 1, 2009, against authorizing the President to bring Guantanamo detainees into the U.S. for trial and then, when it counted a mere two weeks later, they switched their votes.
Two-thirds of these flip-flopping Democrats are in toss up, leans GOP, or likely GOP races with Election Day nearing. One particularly arrogant Congressman, Baron Hill of Indiana’s 9th District, is in a leans GOP race against Todd Young, a former Marine and Deputy Prosecutor in Orange County, IN. Congressman Hill had this to say last October after switching his vote:
“I haven’t had one person ask me about Guantanamo,” said Rep. Baron Hill, D-Ind. He added that he does “not in the least” fear it as an issue in next year’s elections.
Maybe Hill is correct; his votes for the health care, stimulus, and energy bills are perhaps why he is behind in the polls.
Yet in comparatively liberal New York, Congressman Daniel Maffei (NY-25) made those same votes, including switching to allow civilian trials for terrorists, and he has lost his lead against challenger Ann Marie Buerkle. Maffei had this to say about his Gitmo switch:
“It’s a non-issue. Inside the beltway stuff,” said first-term Rep. Dan Maffai [sic], D-N.Y. “People care about jobs, the economy, health care.”
A third example is Congressman Brad Ellsworth (D, IN-8) in a likely GOP race for that open Senate seat against Dan Coats. While Ellsworth voted for both the health care bill and TARP, Coats slammed Ellsworth for his Gitmo vote in his very first television advertisement.
There are others, like Melissa Bean (IL-8) in a tight race against Joe Walsh, Gabrielle Giffords (AZ-8) in a toss up race against Marine veteran Jesse Kelly, and Ron Klein (FL-22) in a leans GOP race against retired Army veteran Lieutenant Colonel Allen West.
To be clear, we would like to see every Congressman who voted to afford the enemy a civilian trial voted out of Congress. But for now, we will be watching the Gitmo flip-floppers listed below (on the left). We urge our fellow Americans to vote for their opponents (listed on the right).
Michael Arcuri, NY-24, versus Richard Hanna *
Melissa Bean, IL-8, versus Joe Walsh *
Tim Bishop, NY-1, versus Randy Altschuler u
* Sanford Bishop, GA-2, versus Mike Keown
John Boccieri, OH-16, versus Jim Renacci *
Rick Boucher, VA-9, versus Morgan Griffith *
* Dennis Cardoza, CA-18, versus Michael Berryhill
* Russ Carnahan, MO-3, versus Ed Martin
* Ben Chandler, KY-6, versus Andy Barr
* Jim Costa, CA-20, versus Andy Vidak
* Jerry F. Costello, IL-12, versus Teri Newman
* Henry Cuellar, TX-28, versus Bryan Underwood
Kathy Dahlkemper, PA-3, versus Mike Kelly *
Lincoln Davis, TN-4, versus, Scott DesJarlais *
* Peter DeFazio, OR-4, versus Art Robinson
Brad Ellsworth, IN-8, versus Dan Coats (for U.S. Senate) *
* Gabrielle Giffords, AZ-8, versus Jesse Kelly
Alan Grayson, FL-8, versus Daniel Webster *
Debbie Halvorson, IL-11, versus Adam Kinzinger *
* Martin Heinrich, NM-1, versus Jonathan Barela
* Brian Higgins, NY-27, versus Leonard Roberto
Baron Hill, IN-9, versus Todd Young *
* Jim Himes, CT-4, versus Dan Debicella
Paul E. Kanjorski, PA-11, versus Lou Barletta *
* Larry Kissell, NC-8, versus Harold Johnson
Ron Klein, FL-22, versus Allen West *
Suzanne M. Kosmas, FL-24, versus Sandy Adams *
* Daniel Lipinski, IL-3, versus Michael A. Bendas
* Stephen Lynch, MA-9, versus Vernon Harrison
Daniel Maffei, NY-25, versus Ann Marie Buerkle *
Betsy Markey, CO-4, versus Cory Gardner *
Jim Marshall, GA-8, versus Austin Scott *
* Jim Matheson, UT-2, versus Morgan Philpot
Kendrick B. Meek, FL-17, versus Marco Rubio (for U.S. Senate) *
* Mike Michaud, ME-2, versus Jason Levesque
Scott Murphy, NY-20, versus Christopher Gibson *
Patrick Murphy, PA-8, versus Michael Fitzpatrick *
Glen Nye, VA-2, versus Scott Rigell *
* Ed Perlmutter, CO-7, versus Ryan L. Frazier
Tom Perriello, VA-5, versus Robert Hurt *
* Collin Peterson, MN-7, versus Lee Byberg
Earl Pomeroy, ND-1, versus Rick Berg *
* Mike Ross, AR-4, versus Beth Anne Rankin
* Bobby Rush, IL-1, versus Ray Wardingley
* Loretta Sanchez, CA-47, versus Van Tran
Mark Schauer, MI-7, versus Tim Walberg *
* Kurt Schrader, OR-5, versus Scott Bruun
* Allyson Schwartz, PA-13, versus Dee Adcock
* Heath Shuler, NC-11, versus Jeff Miller
Ike Skelton, MO-4, versus Vicky Hartzler *
* Adam Smith, WA-9, versus Richard Muri
Dina Titus, NV-3, versus Joe Heck *
Charlie Wilson, OH-6, versus Bill Johnson *
* John Yarmuth, KY-3, versus Todd Lally
See RealClearPolitics.com for election race assessments.
November 2 is also All Souls’ Day and we remember 2,976 of those who departed on 9/11.