(Click here for the full, uncut interview)
(KDKA) PITTSBURGH The attention on Rep. John Murtha and his strong stand on the way the war in Iraq is being conducted has some Republicans out to defeat Murtha in the next election.A wonderful interview and story! If this story is any indication, and given Murtha's recent and not-so-recent legal entanglements, it would appear that the media may be ready to jump on the Irey bandwagon. One could hope, anyway.
KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano sat down with the congressional candidate who wants to do exactly that.
Her name is Diana Irey.
Voters in Washington County know her very well as one of their three county commissioners.
But in fourteen weeks voters in nine southwestern counties will have the chance to send her to congress -- and if they do, it will send a loud message about the war in Iraq.
"The wrong thing to do is to withdraw right now because if we withdraw from Iraq," said Irey. "The terrorists are going to see it as a surrender."
On the issue of Iraq, Irey couldn't be more different than the man she wants to replace.
While Murtha calls for a change in direction, Irey is blunt.
"We have a strategy in Iraq, and we have to stay the course with the strategy," she said. "I'm not saying that everything has gone as well as it should, but what I'm saying is that we have to complete the mission."
Like President Bush, the republican candidate says she will take her lead from the military and she says the folks she talks to think an increase of troops, not a decrease as Murtha wants, may be required.
"All the feedback I am getting from soldiers and military that have been there is that we need more troops on the ground," said Irey.
The 12th Congressional District stretches through nine counties from the Ohio border to Johnstown.
And because Democrat Murtha has become national spokesman against the Bush administration's conduct of the war, groups supporting the president are embracing Republican Irey as a way to get Murtha and send a message.
"We've gotten a lot of attention nationally which was unexpected," said Irey.
Including Rush Limbaugh's national talk show where the 41-year old woman got an unusual compliment.
Limbaugh called her a babe.
"Well, it's a little humbling. I know my three children thought it was hilarious -- three teenagers," she said.
Diana Irey is intent on defeating Murtha which would obviously send a message about how voters in Southwestern Pennsylvania feel about the war in Iraq.
I just got done viewing the full interview
. The differences between Murtha's seditious, defeatist rhetoric and Diana Irey's positive regard for the troops and their mission could not be more stark, nor more different.
Pennsylvania 12th CD voters--you do have a clear choice to make a positive difference, not only for your district, but for our entire nation. Between now and November, please think long and hard about your options.