Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Another ConservaDem Will Try-- And Fail-- To Win A Republican Seat In Pennsylvania


After John Murtha died, his chief of staff/in-house thug, John Hugya, became a lobbyist and a shooting range owner. Today he is a 79 year old NRA fanatic, stinking of Beltway corruption, who wants his old boss' seat in Congress, PA-12. The highly-gerrymandered western Pennsylvania district carefully skirts Pittsburgh but includes some of the northern suburbs plus Johnstown. With blue-leaning Cambria and Lawrence counties balancing out against red-leaning Somerset and Westmoreland counties, elections here are decided by margins in the two biggest counties, red Allegheny and blue Beaver. Last year Keith Rothfus beat incumbent ConservaDem, Mark Critz, another crook from Murtha's old operation, by holdingCritz to a bare 51% win in Beaver and kliing him, 56-44%, in Allegheny. The final score was Rothfus 173,340 (52%) and Critz 161,397 (48%). Obama lost badly to McCain (45-54%) and worse to Romney (41-58%).

The DCCC tried persuading Critz to run again-- he's as corrupt, shady and conservative as Steve Israel-- but he decided to try for the Democratic nomination for Pennsylvania Lt. Governor instead. That left an opening for Hugya, who will be in a primary with psychologist Erin McClelland, whose website tells you nothing about where she stands on any issues, and doesn't even mention she's a Democrat.

BuzzFeed broke the story yesterday about Hugya jumping in. Hugya doesn't want to share his stands on any issues either-- at least not yet.
Hugya brings many of the same qualities Murtha relied on to win the western Pennsylvania district repeatedly, however. Like Murtha, Hugya served in the Marines, retiring as a Colonel. The 79 year-old has a blue collar background, too having spent years working in the Pennsylvania steel industry.

While he was a close associate of Murtha’s for many years during Murtha’s time in Congress, it’s not clear how closely Hugya’s political stances match that of his his former boss. Michael Duga, Hugya’s campaign spokesperson said more details of Hugya’s political stances on issues like military action in Syria will emerge in the coming weeks.

“Col. Hugya is running because he believes the people of the 12th District deserve better,” Duga told BuzzFeed. “Col. Hugya holds Chairman Murtha in the highest regard. He’ll run his own race, and as a former Marine Colonel he is very much his own man.”
Rothfus has been an ineffective, extreme right-wing backbencher who generally does what he's told by Boehner and Cantor. His ProgressivePunch crucial vote score is the second worst of any member of the Pennsylvania delegation, after Bill Shuster's 0.96, an abysmal 1.92, and he's racked up zero scores on education, clean water, global warming, fair taxation, health care, domestic spying, labor rights...

Would Hugya be any better? Probably a close call. But one thing the House Democratic caucus does not need, is more conservative Democrats pulling them in the direction of anti-family policies and towards more corporate corruption.

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