John Murtha

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Democrats Retain Murtha Seat in Congress

Mark Critz defeats Republican Tim Burns in Pennsylvania

(Newser) - Democrats will retain control of the seat held for decades by the late Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha after winning a special election to fill the final months of his term. Both parties viewed the contest as a test for the fall. Murtha aide Mark Critz defeated businessman Tim Burns. The... More »

What to Watch in Today's 4 Primaries

Pennsylvania, Arizona, Kentucky offer intrigue

(Newser) - Four states go to the polls today, and the results will have huge implications. Politico breaks down what to watch for in each race, and we, as always, provide the cliff notes:
  • Pennsylvania: Arlen Specter—the longest serving senator in state history—is in real danger of losing a primary
... More »

Bad News for Dems: Murtha Seat Now a 'Toss-Up'

Party faces yet another battleground

(Newser) - John Murtha’s death has left Democrats with another fight on their hands. Last night the Cook Political Report changed its rating of the race to “toss-up,” one of 50 Democratic-held seats bearing that rating. Voting isn’t far off either; Ed Rendell has 10 days to schedule... More »

Good Riddance to Rep. Murtha

Late Democrat slammed for corruption, stance on Iraq

(Newser) - Right-leaning blog Uncoverage isn't shy about speaking ill of the dead when the deceased in question is Rep. John Murtha. The Pennsylvania Democrat was regularly ranked as one of Congress' most corrupt politicians and stuffed millions of dollars into pork projects for his district, including the barely used John Murtha... More »

Murtha Leaves Huge Shoes ... and Big Chance for GOP

Republicans have long eyed the Pa. seat for takeover

(Newser) - The death today of Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha leaves some huge shoes to fill, and presents a great chance for Republicans. The Atlantic rounds up what’s being said about the Democrat, and what the future might bring:
  • He was the “king of pork.” Murtha used his position
... More »

John Murtha Dead at 77

Powerful Democratic congressman from Pennsylvania was early opponent of Iraq War

(Newser) - Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania, a retired Marine Corps officer who became an outspoken critic of the Iraq war, has died after suffering complications from gallbladder surgery. The powerful Democrat, a close ally of speaker Nancy Pelosi, was 77. In 1974, Murtha became the first combat veteran of the Vietnam... More »

US Pays $400 a Gallon for Gas in Afghanistan

Figure to become major talking point in Congress

(Newser) - As debate over the Afghan war heats up, expect Congress to heavily quote a new statistic from the Pentagon: $400. That’s how much the US pays, on average, for every gallon of fuel put into its planes and combat vehicles in Afghanistan, military officials recently told the House Defense... More »

Murtha Institute Hands Money to Murtha Friends

Funds to beef up security are showered on connected firms

(Newser) - The John P. Murtha Institute for Homeland Security may look like a mostly deserted basement below an Indiana University of Pennsylvania dormitory, but over the years it’s overseen $50 million in federal funds—almost all of it going to Murtha’s friends and industry allies, a Washington Post investigation... More »

Congress Relents, Slashes Unwanted Jet Order

(Newser) - House leaders are slashing their $550 million order for eight new executive jets for use by senior government officials, caving to pressure from fellow lawmakers and the Pentagon, Politico reports. John Murtha’s Defense Appropriations Subcommittee had more than doubled the Pentagon’s original request for $220 million to buy... More »

Murtha Aide Threatened Me: GOP Opponent

Army vet says staffer warned about a possible court-martial

(Newser) - John Murtha's 2008 Republican challenger has accused an aide to the Pennsylvania congressman of threatening to recall him to active military service so the Army could court-martial him, Politico reports. Participating in elective politics while on active duty is against military policy. Russell, who retired from the Army Reserves during... More »

Pentagon Gives $4M in No-Bid Contracts to Murtha Nephew

Looks bad, even if no evidence of meddling

(Newser) - It can be hard for a defense contractor to be related to a powerful legislator with hands on the military’s purse strings. Just ask Robert Murtha, nephew of Democrat John Murtha, and chief of Murtech—everyone assumes that his success is his uncle’s work. Today, the Washington Post... More »

Navy Award for Murtha Sparks Marine Furor

40K sign petition against rep who cried murder in Haditha

(Newser) - Sailors and Marines are up in arms over a Navy commendation to Rep. John Murtha, who has accused servicemen of murdering Iraqi civilians, the Navy Times reports. Outgoing Navy Secretary Donald Winter awarded Murtha the Distinguished Public Service Award earlier this month for his work on a House subcommittee. The... More »

Feds Raid Contractors With Ties to Murtha

Veteran Dem has steered $100M to probed company

(Newser) - Federal agents yesterday raided the offices and homes of two Pennsylvania defense contractors with strong ties to powerful Congressman John Murtha, Politico reports. The lawmaker has steered more than $100 million in federal contracts to the companies, and their employees have given more than $65,000 in contributions to Murtha.... More »

'Redneck' Constituents Cool on Murtha

Longtime congressman has to fight for his seat after repeatedly insulting his district

(Newser) - Democratic stalwart John Murtha just can’t give himself a break. The 17-term congressman first insulted his constituents by saying, “There’s no question Western Pennsylvania is a racist area,” in a newspaper interview, Politico recalls. Then, as his opponent gained traction in polls, Murtha apologized, but added,... More »

Pentagon Will Keep Extending Soldiers' Tours

Military will deny exit to some 12K a month through 2009

(Newser) - Soldiers are likely to face involuntary extensions of combat duty throughout 2009, USA Today reports, despite repeated Pentagon promises to rely less on the practice. Roughly 12,000 soldiers are hit with “stop loss”—which forces them to stay in the Army after their commitment has expired—each... More »

Lobbyists Lavish Gifts on Lawmakers' Fave Charities

More than $13M donated to charities and nonprofits in name of House, Senate members

(Newser) - New congressional ethics rules are showing the public for the first time how much money lobbyists and companies are donating to charities and nonprofits to woo lawmakers, the New York Times reports. Companies and interest groups donated more than $13 million to such groups associated with more than 200 House... More »

Murtha Backtracks on Pa. Racism Jab

Democratic Rep. apologizes for dissing state's west

(Newser) - Rep. John Murtha apologized for saying yesterday that “racist” western Pennsylvanians wouldn’t vote for Barack Obama, CNN reports. “While we cannot deny that race is a factor in this election, I believe we've been able to look beyond race these past few months,” the Democrat said... More »

Lawmakers Seek $6.6B in Earmarks

Biden requests $51.5M; Ted Stevens leads way with $238M

(Newser) - Despite campaign rhetoric against earmarks, a hefty $6.6 billion will be set aside for lawmakers’ pet projects in a $630 billion spending bill nearing approval, USA Today reports. The amount is down 11% from last year. Of note: Though both presidential candidates didn't request any earmarks this year, Joe... More »

No Country for Old McCain: Murtha

Presidency too tall an order for 71-year-old GOP candidate, says rep, 75

(Newser) - John Murtha says John McCain, at 71, might be too old to be commander-in-chief. “This one guy running is about as old as me,” the 75-year-old Democratic congressman said in introducing Hillary Clinton. “Let me tell you something, it’s no old man’s job.” Of... More »

John Murtha, War Critic, Backs Clinton

Congressman says Hillary has 'similar position' on Iraq

(Newser) - John Murtha, the Pennsylvania congressman who has become a leading critic of the Iraq war, is endorsing Hillary Clinton for president, CQ Politics reports. “I know that Senator Clinton has a similar position that I have in regards to the war in Iraq,” Murtha said. While both he... More »

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