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Here's a man who probably needs a primary challenge. This statement exhibits much that is wrong in our politics.  A congressman who cares only about his political future and not America.

Rep. Chet Edwards, a Texas Democrat who remains a firm "no," said he’s getting calls spurred by Organizing for America, the president’s unofficial outreach arm. He said he’s fine with constituents expressing their opinions — and even with the right of OFA to engage — but noted of the Obama organization, "It’s clear to me they could care less about my political future."


You're damn right, Mr. Edwards.  We don't care.

We care about 30,000,000 uninsured.  We care about people who cannot get coverage because of pre-existing conditions.  

OFA should keep calling Mr. Edwards, and we all should join them.

Here's his website where you can send him an email:

Chet Edwards

Phone: 202-225-6105.

Fax: 202-225-0350

I used to not give a damn about Chet Edwards' political future, but now he has identifed all that matters to him, i.e., his political future and not America's needs, well I think we all need to add Mr. Edwards to the list that includes Blanche Lincoln.

Call Chet Edwards.  Tell him you give a damn about his political future: you will help make sure he is defeated if he votes no on this bill.

Update: Spedwybabs points out in the comments that it's too late to challenge Edwards in a primary now because Texas already had their primary. I guess like with Nelson, we wait for 2012.  

Update II: I was asked to offer more details about Congressman Edwards in the interest of fairness:

TomP in my experience you are quite fair minded. (3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:TomP, Tailspinterry, anonintx
Why not read the positive comments which educate those who do not know him,  and in fairness update your diary with some the good things about Congressman Edwards?

Pelosi would not have nominated him for VP if he were as bad as your too short diary leads people to believe.

Okay, he was wrong to say this. But you are wrong to not talk about his record.

The guy is a moderate to progressive Democrat that was redistricted by Delay, bigod! Your diary is damaging to one of the good guys?

by divineorder on Wed Mar 17, 2010 at 01:49:39 PM PDT

by divineorder

I guess it comes down to this for me: this vote really matters and a lot of folks are supporting the bill even when they don't like a lot of it.  See, e.g., Dennis Kucinich, Congresswoman Woolsey, many others.  He may be okay on most issues for a Democrat from a Republican district, but this is a biggie.

Contrast his focus on political self preservation with this:

 Democrats: Vote your conscience on health care

By Marjorie Margolies

Dear wavering House Democrats,

I feel your pain. Eighteen years ago, I was elected on the coattails of a popular young Democratic president who promised a post-partisan Washington. A year later, with partisan gridlock capturing the Capitol, there was a razor-thin vote on the House floor over legislation that Democrats said would remake the country and Republicans promised would bankrupt it.

I was pressed on all sides: by constituents opposed, my president needing a victory and Republicans promising my demise. I was in the country's most Republican district represented by a Democrat. I had repeatedly said, "I will not be a 'read my lips' candidate," when asked if I would promise not to raise taxes.

I voted my conscience, and it cost me.


I am your worst-case scenario. And I'd do it all again.


It's that there are times in all our careers when we must ask ourselves why we're here. I decided that my desire for public service at that moment was greater than my desire to guarantee continued service.  Yes, there are few jobs as rewarding (mostly) as being a member of Congress, and I was let down after I lost. But I believed then and now that being able to point to something tangible that changed our country for the better was a more powerful motivator than the possible electoral repercussions.

I urge you simply to cast the vote you can be proud of next week, next year and for years to come. Given the opportunity, I wouldn't change my vote.

Then again, what do I know? I was a lousy politician.

Chet Edwards may well be a good guy (no reason to think he is not) and a reasonably good vote.  Maybe his statement does not reflect his thinking, maybe he mispoke?  But maybe it does and he is like many other Congress folks who put political self preservation ahead of many other things.

A tough vote that truly matters. And he might lose if he votes for healthcare reform.  It would take real political courage.  

When the end of your life comes and you are thinking over it, wouldn't you want to be the person that did what was right even though it cost you?  Doing what's right when it's easy is nice, but doing what's right when it costs you dearly, well, that is when it truly counts.    

It's this:

It's that there are times in all our careers when we must ask ourselves why we're here. I decided that my desire for public service at that moment was greater than my desire to guarantee continued service.

Originally posted to TomP on Wed Mar 17, 2010 at 10:51 AM PDT.

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