Barry Loudermilk: Backlash "intensity" unexpected
by Hilary Butschek January 13, 2015 11:39 AM The day after voting to re-elect Speaker John…
(Jan 14, 2015) — The day after voting to re-elect Speaker John Boehner, U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk,
R–Cassville, said he did not expect the “intensity” of the backlash against his vote.
Loudermilk denied flip-flopping on a campaign promise to elect new leadership, saying he voted against Boehner last November during a vote to determine the Republican nominee for speaker.
“Nobody stood up to challenge John Boehner [in November],” Loudermilk said. “Even without a challenge I cast a ‘no’ vote because I thought we needed something different. There’s no cameras there, so I had nothing to gain. It was not a grandstand. It was truly a principled vote that I thought we needed new leadership. [Tuesday] was not the time to have that fight — that was back in November.”
Loudermilk was one of the 216 votes that saw Boehner re-elected speaker Jan. 6. Twenty-five Republicans voted for other candidates or voted present. Runner-up Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., received 164 votes.
During his campaign, Loudermilk said he signed a pledge that he “would vote against the speaker at the earliest opportunity or the first opportunity to do so” — and he said he did. …
That pledge wasn’t a “core principle” of his campaign, but it was mentioned, and many of his constituents have misconceptions about his Jan. 6 vote for Boehner, Loudermilk said Jan. 7.
Loudermilk said he had no other choice but to vote for Boehner. …
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Loudermilk said his staff has been reading comments from Facebook and answering phones
about the vote all day and he understands why some are blasting him for allegedly
going back on his word.
“I truly understand why they’re upset. I’m upset that that’s the choice that I had to make yesterday,” Loudermilk said.
Kerwin Swint, a political science professor at Kennesaw State University, said the Loudermilk camp should not worry about the negative comments swarming this week; it will blow over soon.
“I think they did the only thing they could do under the circumstances, so I don’t think it will hurt him or any Republican at all down the line,” Swint said. …
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