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Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Political Ecologists Mourn the Death of a White RINO-New York congressman Benjamin Gilman is hanging it up. The liberal Republican decide to retire rather than take on fellow incumbent Republican Sue Kelly in a new 19th district. He had toyed with the idea of becoming a Democrat, but opted for retirement instead. The WaPo is mourning the "dwindling number of World War II veterans in Congress -- he flew 35 missions over Japan and earned the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Clusters." Well, last I checked, WWII ended 57 years ago. Anyone who fought in WWII is now in their late 70s or older, and people that age are usually dead or retired. This is another case of the ideological bipoliarisaztion of the political parties. While you will have a few Southern Democrats who will be to the right of a few Northeastern Republican, we have seen an increasing amount of uniformity among the parties over the last three decades. The outliers on the Republican left and the Democratic right will typically be a one-generation thing, as conservative Democrats are replaced by conservative Republicans and liberal Republicans are replaced by liberal Democrats.

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