Playing Catch-Up in the Leadership Races

Mary Katharine Ham
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Posted: Nov 15, 2006 6:22 PM

If you guys haven't explored them yet, please check out the audio of the blogger calls with Republican leadership candidates.

I, of course, highly recommend Pence, Shadegg, and Blackburn. It would be a pleasure to listen to these guys talk for a couple years, and that's saying something when you're talking politicians. Blackburn is running for head of the House Republican Conference, and I've always thought she was a great spokeswoman. She comes across like a normal person, not a pol, and she's got spunk.

All of the transcripts are posted on my column page, despite the fact that it was our great intern Nick who put the transcripts together, not me. But, hey, you gotta put them somewhere. Enjoy, and thanks Nick.

Josue's also been doing blog posts on all these calls if you want the abbreviated version.

The latest HotLine update on the Republican races was calling it "Boehner's race to lose," which is pretty much what I've been hearing-- that Shadegg might make it, but we're probably getting a second round of Boehner. Of course, I imagine the voting will be close, especially since it's a secret ballot. Maybe behind closed doors, Pence can make it happen. Oughtta be good.

If you're feeling down about the Republican leadership, just remember: Dems are about to elect Jack Murtha Majority Leader. He was on Hardball today: "We got the votes." Earlier today, Hoyer said he had the votes; now, Murtha's bragging about his ballot haul (good video of Murtha on Hardball at that link, too). His ridiculous defense of the "total crap" comment from earlier today is especially hilarious. These guys don't even try to make it sound good.

The HotLine reports Pelosi is positively workin' it for her boy, Jack (emphasis mine).

The second continues from 11/12, when Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi injected herself in the race. While her inital letter backing Murtha was initially seen as simple loyalty, but now, she's making phone calls and button-holing members for their support. Baltimore Sun's Hay Brown reports the speaker-in-waiting is playing hardball: She summoned Rep.-elect Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) to her office to ask why Gillibrand was supporting current Dem whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD), and, completely coincidentally, asked for Gillibrand's committee preferences. 

Secret ballot for Dem leadership is tomorrow morning. Who will win the race to the bottom?

Speaking of bottom, how's that Lott leadership role playing?