Ped-Bike Mockery Flops for 7-Term House Incumbent

The National Republican Congressional Committee ran this ad against Democratic challenger Kathy Dahlkemper in the race for Pennsylvania’s third congressional district. It hits a few Gingrichian notes on how to address the country’s energy problems before the announcer tells us incredulously:

Dahlkemper’s wacky solution? She said we should make personal sacrifices, such as walking places and riding bikes. Hmm… Why don’t we use dog-sleds, too?

That passage heaps on the fear and loathing with scare quotes, shots of an impossibly crowded sidewalk, and a bike bell sound effect. But guess what? Seven-term incumbent Phil English is heading back to Erie, and Kathy Dahlkemper is going to Washington. The AP breaks down her victory:

Mrs. Dahlkemper’s advantage was viewed as being in the more urban areas
of the district — the cities of Erie, Sharon, Meadville and Butler —
where she was expected to benefit from longtime union support and Sen.
Barack Obama’s presence at the top of the ticket. Her challenge was to
sway voters in the suburban and rural regions.

Think Dahlkemper’s competition will bank on the same anti-urban message in 2010?

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Bike-Hating Rep. Patrick McHenry Fends Off Challenger

|
Congresswoman-elect Kathy Dahlkemper overcame ridicule for her "wacky" notion that Pennsylvanians should try walking and cycling. But down in western North Carolina, voters returned Rep. Patrick McHenry — shown here mocking, and misrepresenting, the federal bike commuter tax benefit — to Washington. Though his state also went for Barack Obama, the outspoken conservative Republican defeated […]

CD 36 Candidate Survey: Marcy Winograd

|
When Congress Woman Jane Harman announced her resignation earlier this year, two of California’s political heavyweights moved quickly to try and position themselves as the frontrunner for the suddenly vacant Congressional seat.  However, many members of the 36th District were excited because they believed Harman’s absence would create an opening for Marcy Winograd, a progressive […]

Livable Streets People of the Year

|
This is both my favorite and least favorite column to write.  On one hand, it’s amazing to reflect on all of the people that make up the movement that will change Los Angeles.  On the other hand, trying to decide a “person of the year” from all of those same people is kind of difficult.  […]

Election Roundup: In City’s First Race Fought over Progressive Urban Planning, Streetsie Winner Huizar Prevails

|
In Los Angeles’ first political race fought over progressive urban design, incumbent City Councilmember Jose Huizar gathered nearly three times as many votes as his closest opponent, former Supervisor Gloria Molina in a lopsided victory. (Full results: here) Huizar campaigned hard on his Livable Streets record in Council District 14 (CD14) while Molina argued that […]