Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) Got My Vote This Morning (and Tomorrow)


wayne gilchrest 1 the washington note.jpg
Congressman Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) has been under attack by the right wing of his party lately and has had a tougher than normal primary race — which will take place tomorrow.
Gilchrest was one of only two Republican congressman who voted in favor of a timeline for withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.
This morning, in 15 degree weather, I met Congressman Gilchrest and a bunch of his supporters waving campaign signs and the American flag at the Kent Island, Maryland park-and-ride stop. I had been dropped off there after spending the weekend in Chestertown, MD on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay and am catching the 6:50 am bus back into DC.
I don’t know Gilchrest well — but I like him. Earlier this year at a speech at the colonial era-founded liberal arts school, Washington College, of which George Washington was a founding member of its Board of Visitors, Gilchrest said with regard to the possibility (then) of President Bush bombing Iran, he would “personally go down to the floor of the House of Representatives and file articles of impeachment himself.”
Gilchrest also encouraged students to read what he considered to be the best new book out on the US-Iran-Israel relationship, Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran and the United States by Trita Parsi. Parsi’s book, which I also recommend, takes the relationship between these three powers out of the contemporary tit-for-tat posturing and looks at the longer term behavior and strategic calculations of this trio. It’s a sensible, realistic take on Iran and Israel — and it’s great that a moderate Republican like Gilchrest is pushing the kind of book that makes John Bolton blow steam.
In any case, as far as the Republican primary tomorrow, I’m encouraging my friends in Maryland that tilt that direction to vote for Gilchrest — not because he was enthusiastically braving freezing temperatures outside with no shelter at 6 am at a bus stop — but because he is quite sensible on American foreign policy.
I have to say that seeing the happy Republican enjoy the chance to talk to users of mass transit and him encouraging everyone to vote won me over. Unfortunately, our curmudgeonly bus driver wouldn’t let him on the bus to say a good morning to all and encourage them to vote — where it was warm.
The bus did have a sign that said “no solicitation” but still. . .Marylanders, go vote.
— Steve Clemons


9 comments on “Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) Got My Vote This Morning (and Tomorrow)

  1. Alex says:

    Steve, that was a great book salon yesterday; I really enjoyed the discussion. Plus, I really want to read the book now! I was absolutely fascinated by that comment about Dean and Altameyer’s research in Canada vis-a-vis the authoritarians who would destroy the world…over and over. The failure to learn is staggering, almost incomprehensible to any progressive, and may quite possibly be a serious faultline between the authoritarians and progressives. Not convinced it is a bridgeable gap.
    I hang out frequently at FDL, although I don’t comment anymore since they changed the format. It’s a great site and the book salons are superb. Thanks for hosting yesterday and I look forward to more in the future.


  2. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “(noting your tireless advocacy for Ron Paul)”
    Steve, my advocacy has less to do with Ron Paul than it has to do with advocating for a choice of candidates that is not determined by the MSM. Because of the media’s treatment of Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich, a huge number of Americans were disenfranchised, and Paul and Kucinich did not have the opportunity to gather the momentum and popular support that it was obvious they were capable of garnering. The true irony is that the two of them came far closer to advocating for the popular political positions of the majority of Americans, if the polls are to be believed.
    This election is being decided by the MSM. Period.


  3. Steve Clemons says:

    Appreciate your views and political standards POA — but I disagree with you on Gilchrest. Like you, I am not an automatic advocate of either party (noting your tireless advocacy for Ron Paul) — but when I see Republicans of the sort of Wayne Gilchrest, I don’t expect them to vote on each of these battles the way I would — but I acknowledge the big ones.
    I like Gilchrest — and we need Republicans of his sort in the Congress. Best, Steve


  4. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Steve, if you want to advocate for someone, THIS is what you should show us. Anything less is just fluff.
    It appears that Gilchrest’s voting history is not consistent with someone that votes purely along partisan lines. Thats a good thing. But in regards to Iraq, he has pretty much voted to give Bush everything he has asked for.
    As far as his remark about impeachment, I’m not impressed. Bush qualified for impeachment long ago, and I haven’t seen Gilchrest leading any charges in that direction.


  5. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Gilchrest said with regard to the possibility (then) of President Bush bombing Iran, he would “personally go down to the floor of the House of Representatives and file articles of impeachment himself.””
    Gee, how impressive. I guess in Gilchrest’s skewed little tunnel of patriotism, it takes lyin’ us into TWO wars to qualify for impeachment.
    Besides, talk is cheap.


  6. Steve Clemons says:

    Thanks Don — I will post the link to the whole book salon shortly. I also thought it was very interesting and worthwhile.


  7. DonS says:

    It was me on the Jacob Heilbrunn/They Knew They Were Right – The Rise of the Neocons book discussion yesterday on FireDogLake.com. Those discussions go awfully fast, but I thought it was useful and quite substantive; some rather forthright comments, as you know.
    I wanted to phrase my own neocon-related questions without appearing to be on the hobby horse I sometimes feel (and I did later post a follow up on the TWN post a couple down), but I was most interested in the comments of others. Interestingly, I don’t think AIPAC and its role was mentioned once, though the Israel connection certainly entered; I think you initially raised it.
    Off to work.


  8. Steve Clemons says:

    Thanks DonS — just got back into DC after blogging on the bus in. I think I saw you on the Jacob Heilbrunn/They Knew They Were Right – The Rise of the Neocons book discussion yesterday on FireDogLake.com. Thanks for participating if that was indeed you.
    All the best,


  9. DonS says:

    The Gilchrest vote might be another de facto referendum on the war.
    Of course, what did the dems do with their ’06 mandate on the war. Threw it back in the voters’ faces. Seems like Gilchrest showed more courage.
    Stay warm Steve. Its not even 15 here in SW Virginia. Hillary and Barack both cancelled visits last evening due to high winds. Thank God Bill and Huck are around.


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