Monday, July 10, 2006

Life After Murtha?

According to the Tribune Democrat, some businesses in Murtha's home district are indeed considering that possiblity:
To say that U.S. Rep. John Murtha has played an integral role in redeveloping the local economy during the past 25 years would be an understatement.

The impact of defense-related business on the local economy may not rival the impact steel and coal once had locally, but it is significant. And the growth of that segment of the region’s economy can be traced directly to Murtha.

The congressman developed a high level of influence in defense circles while serving as chairman of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee. He continues to hold clout as the panel’s ranking Democrat.

Murtha is a 16-term congressman who is in his 32nd year in the House.

A number of area companies recognize the impact that Murtha has had on their success.

But they also realize that the 74-year-old’s run in Washington eventually will come to an end.

Dan DeVos, president and CEO of Concurrent Technologies Corp., said preparing for life after Murtha has been a real concern for about a decade. He said the congressman has impressed upon the area’s defense industry leaders the need to wean themselves from his aid.

“His involvement through directed funding helped increase the budget, and in the early years we were very dependent on that,” DeVos said in May.
Still, there are those who continue to dismiss the possibility of Murtha's being up-ended come November:
Despite Murtha’s stance, his re-election is virtually guaranteed, said G. Terry Madonna, a political analyst at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster.

“Of all the districts in Pennsylvania, it’s not on anybody’s watch list – not either party, not independent chroniclers,” Madonna said. “They’ve conceded it. There’s no evidence that I’ve seen that (the war) is a serious factor in his re-election effort.
Yet, our own "Bones", via his research, contends that quite the opposite is the case. Murtha's anti-American rhetoric indeed makes him vulnerable in a congressional district that boasts many members of the military and their families, yet, Madonna goes on to say...
“His support of the military over the years gives him a credibility on these issues that a dovish congressman doesn’t have. He is insulated from some of the criticism.”
The left's insistence on portraying Murtha as a "hawkish" democrat continues to amaze me, especially in light of Murtha's penchant for cutting and running from Lebanon and Somalia (stances for which, btw, he continues to take great pride); the policies of which culminated in emboldening Al Qaeda to finally commit the atrocities on 9/11/2001.

Congressman John Murtha is not a hawk. Murtha's "hawkishness" in defense matters has been borne out only to the extent to which he could use his post on the House Armed Services Committee to bring home defense contracts and other pork for his home district.

There will indeed be life after Murtha. But, given Murtha's seditious rhetoric; given the memories of similar rhetoric by one John F. Kerry, and finally, given veterans' long memories in such matters when one of their own sullies their good name, life after Murtha will more than likely occur sooner than later.