Politics

Rebel Marine Democrat Voted With Republicans On Covid Relief Bill

He won his seat through ranked choice voting.

Image Credit: Youtube Screenshot

If Republicans sometimes pull their hair out over Lisa Murkowski or Mitt Romney in the Senate, there’s one House Democrat who does the same to his party. He represents a Trump district and has the guts to buck his party, on certain things.

 

FNC: “In the showdown over the $1.9 trillion COVID relief package, Rep. Jared Golden stood alone from the rest of his party. The two-term lawmaker who represents Maine’s 2nd Congressional District was the only House Democrat last week to vote against the massive spending bill, as it passed its last legislative hurdle along party lines before being signed into law by President Biden.” Hard left Democrats want to primary him for it.

“Golden was an early opponent to the move by his party’s congressional leadership to advance the bill through budget reconciliation, which allowed the legislation to pass with Democratic votes only and avoided the 60-vote filibuster threshold in the Senate. And Golden was one of only two Democrats – along with Rep. Kurt Schrader of Oregon – who voted against the relief package in late February when it cleared its first House hurdle. Golden’s congressional district – the largest east of the Mississippi River – contains a number of small cities, including Auburn, Bangor and Lewiston, but is mostly rural. Former President Trump won the district in 2016 – and captured it again by seven points in his 2020 reelection defeat.” Seven points is solid. Golden knows if he goes too far left it’s curtains.

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“Golden, a Marine veteran who deployed to both Afghanistan and Iraq, narrowly won the district in 2018 as the Democrats recaptured the House majority for the first time in eight years. He became the first member of Congress elected by ranked-choice voting. The congressman won reelection last November by seven points, outperforming then-Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in the district by nearly 30,000 votes.” Ranked choice lets voters submit ballots that list not only their first-choice candidate for a position, but also their second, third and so on. Maine has it. NYC just adopted it.

According to Time, “The candidate with the majority (more than 50%) of first-choice votes wins outright. If no candidate gets a majority of first-choice votes, then it triggers a new counting process. The candidate who did the worst is eliminated, and that candidate’s voters’ ballots are redistributed to their second-choice pick. In other words, if you ranked a losing candidate as your first choice, and the candidate is eliminated, then your vote still counts: it just moves to your second-choice candidate. That process continues until there is a candidate who has the majority of votes.” Interesting. But back to Golden.

Explaining his opposition to the Covid Relief Bill, he wrote, “I know there are people who will continue to need assistance getting through the final stages of this pandemic, which is why I have argued that Congress should have addressed their needs with a targeted bill that extends unemployment benefits, funds vaccine distribution, and increases investments in our public health infrastructure…when combined with the over $4 trillion we have already spent battling the coronavirus, borrowing and spending hundreds of billions more in excess of meeting the most urgent needs poses a risk to both our economic recovery…” Not bad, for a Democrat.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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