Jason Altmire

With Mitt Romney sweeping the table against the sad remnants of the sorriest presidential field in years, the real action last night was in the Pennsylvania congressional primaries, where much of Washington's political press was caught completely off guard. Democratic primary voters knocked out two incumbent congressmen—Tim Holden, who’s represented his district between Harrisburg and Allentown for 20 years, and Jason Altmire, who won his district north of Pittsburgh in the 2006 Democratic wave. Both men found themselves in districts sharply redrawn by Pennsylvania Republicans.

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Just a few days ago, I said once again that I would try to resist engaging in media criticism on this blog. Today I'm going to officially declare one of the exceptions to that rule: when I see the need to correct the record on matters of political geography, a subject of special interest to me. In this case, I'm basically rehashing a point I made a couple weeks ago because, well, it appears no one's paying me any mind. So here goes again.

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Politico says immigration reform is a bad issue for both parties: [T]he polarizing issue is fraught with peril for both parties — so much so that, when asked about the politics of it all, former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie paraphrases the words of Democratic New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson: “When immigration is an issue, nobody wins.” Of course this is almost literally impossible.

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The Hill reports on the state of negotiations in the House: Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.), who voted against the House healthcare bill in November, said on "Fox News Sunday" that he has an "open mind" about the final measure. Those kind of public comments invite long discussions with the Speaker, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and/or the president. Holding out can lead to benefits. Reps. Dennis Cardoza (D-Calif.) and Jim Costa (D-Calif.), who were undecided days before the Nov.

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The Inkblot Test

An article that ran in Politico on Friday provided a Rorschach test for those of us following the health care reform debate. The story was about reform’s prospects following President Obama’s bipartisan meeting. And it dwelt, at length, with the situation in the House. In order to enact reform, as you probably know, the House will have to pass the Senate bill as written, as well as pass amendments that the Senate can consider through the budget reconciliation process.

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An article that ran in Politico on Friday provided a Rorschach test for those of us following the health care reform debate. The story was about reform’s prospects following President Obama’s bipartisan meeting. And it dwelt, at length, with the situation in the House. In order to enact reform, as you probably know, the House will have to pass the Senate bill as written, as well as pass amendments that the Senate can consider through the budget reconciliation process.

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