Sunday, April 11, 2010

Quick thoughts on Stupak's resignation

So I have been reading NYT's discussion of Stupak's resignation. I think that the conversation is largely off base. Stupak represents MI-1, which includes northern Michigan and the UP (upper peninsula), a region with some of the highest unemployment in the country. I don't care to find out exact figures, but it saw unemployment as high as 25% there.

As I see it, Stupak is not running for another term in part because he is being targeted by republicans, yes. But also in large part because he knows that this election would have been a tough fight with or without HCR. When your district suffers economically, your constituents will hold their elected officials (in part) accountable. Not only will 2010 be a slog, but 2012, 2014 and 2016 will also be tough. Such a economically depressed region of the country will not see a rapid decline in unemployment quickly, and the district will remain vulnerable the whole time. After 18 years in congress I think that Stupak decided it is not worth slogging through n more dogged campaign cycles. Instead retire now when the Dems owe you big.

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