Mar 4, 2010

When one vote ended a political career

A Time Magazine report illustrates what will surely happen to many Congressmen in the November elections.

From the report:

As the House prepares for its final push on health care, there are Democratic members, particularly those from conservative districts, who are facing a hard truth: This is the kind of vote that can end a career.

It was the night of August 5, 1993, and Bill Clinton was one vote short of what he needed to get his economic plan through the House--a vote he got, when freshman Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky (pictured) switched hers.

The other side of the Chamber seemed to explode. Republicans pulled out their hankies and started waving them at her, chanting: "Bye-bye, Margie."

Rep. Margolies-Mezvinsky had sealed her fate with that one vote to please Bill Clinton.

She found out the Republicans were right when they waved good bye to her after her vote. She learned the hard way that voting against the wishes of her constituents can have consequences.

Her Main Line Philadelphia district was the most Republican-leaning of any represented by a Democrat in Congress. She was not re-elected.

She was not the only one to be charmed by Bill Clinton. By the next election one-third of the women who had come to the House in the Class of 1992 were gone--largely as the result of that one vote.

How many Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky’s will there be this year? Probably dozens.

Link here and here.