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Republican Reps Blast GOP, One Withdraws from Reelection in Disgust

Republican Reps Blast GOP, One Withdraws from Reelection in Disgust

Two Republican members of Congress blasted their own party on Tuesday, and one announced he was so disillusioned that he would not stand for reelection.

Rep. Steve LaTourette, R-Ohio, said that he would officially withdraw from the race next Wednesday, saying members of Congress had become “more interested in fighting with each other” than getting things done. Rep. Richard Hanna, R-N.Y., said that Republicans were beholden to the “extremes” in their party.

LaTourette, a moderate, pro-union Republican, cited the House’s foot-dragging on the Transportation bill as a sign of growing dysfunction in the body.

“We’re talking about about building roads and bridges for Chrissakes,” he told the Washington Post. LaTourette said members of Congress meant to give  financial and political support to extremes, and he was tired of it.

“I have reached the conclusion that the atmosphere today and the reality that exists in the House of Representatives no longer encourages the finding of common ground,” he said.

While LaTourette criticized both Democrats and Republicans, Hanna saved his sharpest attacks for his fellow Republicans.

“I have to say that I’m frustrated by how much we — I mean the Republican Party — are willing to give deferential treatment to our extremes in this moment in history,” Hanna told the Syracuse Post-Standard. Hanna cited Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., for her attacks on State Department aide Huma Abedin.

“We render ourselves incapable of governing when all we do is take severe sides,” Hanna said. “If all people do is go down there and join a team, and the team is invested in winning and you have something that looks very similar to the shirts and the skins, there’s not a lot of value there.”

While Hanna said there were extremists on both sides, he said he had “friends” in the Democratic caucus, and that they were “much more congenial — a little less angry.”

Hanna, like LaTourette, is considered a moderate in his party. He defeated a tea party challenger in a primary earlier in the summer, and will face Democrat and former congressional aide Dan Lamb in November.

LaTourette’s decision to wait to withdraw until next week will allow Republicans in Ohio to select a replacement for him on the ballot. While LaTourette’s district is winnable for Democrats, the only candidate currently running is Dale Blanchard, who lost badly to LaTourette in 2000 and 2002.

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Image Credit: U.S. House of Representatives

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91 comments

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8:35AM PDT on Sep 9, 2012

I applaud moderate, intelligent Republicans, who want to work with the other side. It's the only way to get badly needed legislation passed. We need people like these, and I'm sorry to see La Tourette leave.

8:03PM PDT on Aug 4, 2012

While I appreciate the reaons for Rep. LaTourette's disgust with his party and his decision not to seek re-election, by doing this he's leaving a space open for another insane, rabid conservative to step in. The only way to fight these kind of people is to hang in there and not let them take over.

2:27PM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

Disgusted republicans? This has got to be a misprint or something!

4:56AM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

Edith B said:

"It is time for both parties to find some moderates, quit fighting with each other and get about the business of helping this country!"

Edith, the Democratic Party is comprised nearly entirely of moderates. Take a closer look.

Contrary to Fox "News" lies there are no communists or socialists among the Democratic elected body. As a matter of fact millions of Democrats like myself are finding the Democratic Party far too right of center for our tastes.

Fox "News" would have you believe that advocating allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire is a radical socialist call for redistribution of wealth. Their propaganda is absurd. I hope you don't buy into their lies.

3:49AM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

It's a good start, wish more will follow.

2:58AM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

Tony C, look into Alan Grayson from Florida. I think you'll like what you see.

Personally, I would rather these two particular gentlemen remain in the running and possible in office. I say that simply because without them there are two less vaguely sane voices in the GOP. And the GOP desperately needs all of the sane voices it can get. (Mebbe if there are enough, they'll finally drown out the evil voices in their own heads.)

1:10AM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

Bravo, Gentlemen...

12:30AM PDT on Aug 3, 2012

I would like to believe that if I was a politician and was elected to serve the people I would look at the issues and vote my conscience even if it was against my party. I also believe that a lot of politicians are sheep who just follow the party line even if it is asinine just so they can be reelected. A 2 year term with a CLEAR conscience where I can faithfully serve the people is better than being a sheep who follows blindly and If I did a good job I would let the people decide if I should be reelected.
Of course that is a pipe dream these days because of the supreme courts ruling where they allow billionaires to buy most elections. Hopefully the people will Google or utube the candidates they want to reelect by seeing what they stand for and vote accordingly.

10:38PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

It seems politics anymore is about POWER, not service to one's country. And the week minded can only think of power because it boosts their egos.

It is people like these two men, who seem to have some ethics, common sense and decency, that are needed in the Congress. People who will work for the better of ALL Americans no matter their ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, gender, or political affiliation.

10:06PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

they should working for the USA !!

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