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Republican House members who switched their vote Thursday to narrowly defeat a proposal of benefit to the LGBT community have been targeted in their re-election bids.
Four of the seven Republicans who apparently switched their votes will be especially vulnerable in November’s general election, according to The Hill.
Those four are Reps. Jeff Denham and David Valadao, both of California, Bruce Poliquin of Maine and David Young of Iowa.
House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, circulate a list of those four to Democratic lawmakers, along with those of the remaining three vote-switchers: Darrell Issa and Mimi Walters, both of California, and Greg Alden of Oregon.
When Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, a New York Democrat, presented his LGBT amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act Thursday, it appeared at first that it was going to pass, 217-206.
But then Republican House leaders, including Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana and Chief Deputy Whip Patrick McHenry of North Carolina pressured fellow party members to change their votes.
When the amendment failed by a single vote, 212-213, the chamber erupted into chaos, with Democrats chanting, “Shame! Shame! Shame!”
Democrats plan to use the vote-switching as an example of succumbing to party leadership in the general election.
Poliquin, one of the four most vulnerable House members, denied that he’d been lobbied to change his vote.
“I am outraged that political opponents or members of the press would claim or insinuate that I cast a vote due to pressure or party politics. No one controls my vote,” he said in a statement. “I abhor discrimination in any form and at any place.”
Democrat Emily Cain, who Poliquin will likely face in November, saw it differently.
“Congressman Poliquin apparently has no moral compass on the issue of discrimination,” Cain said in a statement on Friday. “But what’s truly disappointing is that Congressman Poliquin didn’t come clean with voters, but instead reversed himself in secret as part of a backroom deal with Republican leadership.”
Social media saw it differently.
@thehill typical D’s believe they have “moral high ground”-cannot be reasoned with-only out for revenge/lb of flesh now!
— Mark Francis (@mark28210) May 22, 2016
@thehill Why not try something new? Work with the GOP vs the Obama methods of it’s my way or the highway?
— Be Resp 4UR Actions (@Look_In_Mirror) May 22, 2016
@thehill Love retribution stories. Will they vote to kill more babies
— Skipper (@ColSlade19) May 22, 2016
There were also a few like this.
@thehill We have GOT to get these religious nuts out of office! We are ALL Americans! Take your religious bigotry somewhere else!
— J.P. Harmon (@brian_riback) May 22, 2016
The Cook Political Report rates a Poliquin0-Cain match as a toss-up.
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