I very rarely talk politics. I abhor it. But this story is local for
me, and it's a stunner: an amazing case study in likely political 'self immolation'.
North Carolina's 11th congressional district was gerrymandered in
2011 to create a heavily Republican, 99% white district.
They elected French-born, Florida educated, Tea-Party-backed Republican Mark Meadows to the House seat, replacing a local boy, home-town hero, and ex-NFL quarterback, democrat Heath Shuler.
Meadows, in congress for just ten months has been credited with being
one of the strongest behind-the-scenes advocates of the 'defund
Obamacare at any cost' movement (see his Wikipedia profile for more detail).
The irony: Meadows' district is heavily
economically dependent on Great Smoky Mountains National Park, on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and on the
Appalachian Trail - every mile of the AT in North Carolina falls within
his district. Apparently he's just now realized that--in the past week and a half. His constituents are revolting and Meadows has "fallen
conspicuously silent since the shutdown started to bite" according to
this recent Guardian article.
Amazing. An example of how voters didn't do their homework and got the wool pulled over their eyes. I'll be watching his 2014 campaign with great interest.
Here's the article:
Congressman Mark Meadows speaks at the "Exempt America from Obamacare"
rally, on Capitol Hill, 10 September 2013. Photograph: Drew
|Congressman Mark Meadows speaks at the "Exempt America from Obamacare" rally, on Capitol Hill, 10 September 2013. Photograph: Drew Angerer/Getty Images|