- Representative Neil Abercrombie (D HI 1) resigns to concentrate on his gubernatorial campaign, leading to a special election in which the Democratic forces refuse to settle on one candidate, thereby allowing Republicans to win the seat with far less than 50%. This reduced the magic number of seats the GOP needs to control the House to 39.
- Obama nominates Representative John McHugh (R NY 23) to administration post, which leads to a special election that divided local and national Republican operatives. Democrats win the three-way contest. This intra-party battle foreshadows rifts in Republican primaries throughout the country.
- Representative John Murtha (D PA 12) dies. Republicans use the special election to test their anti-Obama/Pelosi message in a blue-collar district. Democrats win the seat anyway.
- After the brutal healthcare debate and related abortion controversy, Representative Bart Stupak (D MI 1) says he won’t run again.
- Representative Eric Massa (D NY 29) resigns after a sex scandal. Appointed Governor David Paterson (D) decides to let the seat stay vacant until November 2010.
- Freshman Representative Alan Grayson (D FL 8 ) regularly says extreme things on the House floor, cable tv and elsewhere. Republicans make him target number one, yet they can’t recruit a consensus candidate for this district and a free-wheeling primary ensues.
- Freshman Representative Parker Griffith (now R AL 5) left the Democratic party. Republicans reward him with a seat on Energy and Commerce. Griffith loses the primary to a long-time state elected officeholder.
- Representative David Obey (D WI 7), Appropriations chair, announces he won’t run for a 22nd term.
- WV 1 Democratic voters oust 14-term Representative Alan Mollohan who – with his father before him – brought hundreds of millions of federal dollars to the district.
- 20 House Democrats voted twice against health care and once against climate change.
Continuing from our theme yesterday of reflecting on the myriad of developments that combined to make up this awesome crazy cycle, lets take a look at the following developments that shaped the 2010 House races.
There is a time for politics and a time for governing. The time for politics is over the time for governing is upon us.