Kean Looks on Amid GOP Chaos
Those watching the House of Representatives Tuesday afternoon saw a then-happy looking Kevin McCarthy posing with the New Jersey Republican delegation.
Chris Smith was the veteran of the group – by far.
The others, of course, were Jeff Van Drew, a former Democrat, and Thomas H. Kean Jr., who was serving his first day in Congress.
We know now that McCarthy’s good feeling has to be in a sort of suspended animation.
At this writing, there have been two votes for Speaker and McCarthy has failed to win both times. In fact, 19 Republicans opposed him; he could afford to lose only four.
All three House members from New Jersey were on McCarthy’s side. No surprise there.
McCarthy, you may recall, attended Kean’s campaign kickoff in the summer of 2021.
The evolving chaos really is not unexpected, giving a pronounced split among Republicans.
Some of it has to do with the “Trump cult.”
But there also seems to be a tendency among some to enjoy being rabble-rousers as opposed to actually getting things done.
We see that here in New Jersey with some of the far-right candidates in GOP primaries.
One of those rabble-rousers, Matt Gaetz, of Florida, nominated Jim Jordan of Ohio for speaker the second time around. Realize that Gaetz has been quoted as saying he would not care if a Democrat becomes Speaker..
Sounds rational, no?
At any rate, it was fascinating to see Kean with a pained expression on his face sitting right behind Gaetz as the Floridian nominated Jordan.
During just about every election campaign, all candidates enjoy yakking about how they can work “across the aisle.” Kean did that in his successful CD-7 campaign.
But now, it seems more important for Republicans to work “within their aisle” to get things done.
As today’s drama continues to unfold, you have to figure Bob Healey, Frank Pallotta and Paul DeGroot may be saying, “if only there really was a red wave.”
Those three Republicans ran spirited, but unsuccessful campaigns, against Democratic incumbents in CD-3, 5 and 11.
If there had been a “wave,” there would be many more Republicans in the House and none of this craziness would be happening.
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