I was amazed this morning as I ate my bran flakes and watched CNN. A congressman from northern Virginia, Gerald Connolly, was being interviewed on whether he would vote yes or no on the Health Care Bill this week. He had voted yes on the House bill but doesn’t yet know how he will vote on the legislation that is being written for the new bill.
CNN showed footage of his opponent in this fall’s election, a snappy Republican, who is waiting to hang around Rep. Connolly’s neck the kitschy political phrase, ‘He voted for the bill before he voted against it.’ Whetting his knife to extract a pound of flesh from a man with courage and principles.
Rather, Connolly told CNN something that often is not heard in the halls of Congress. He said that if he votes for the bill and that causes him defeat in the fall, at least he did something worthwhile in attempting to help the American citizens. ‘After all,’ he said, ‘that’s what citizens send their representatives to Washington to do.’
Imagine that. Standing up for one’s beliefs. Willing to take the heat. What a rare moment in today’s world of governance.