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Tags: moderate | house | democrats | blue dogs | name

Internal Tiff Shrinks Moderate Dem Group 'Blue Dogs'

democrat party logo
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Tuesday, 24 January 2023 02:37 PM EST

An internal disagreement about rebranding the centrist Democrat "Blue Dog" coalition led to the group nearly being cut in half, Politico reported.

Seven of the 15 members expected to join the Blue Dogs this year are departing after a heated disagreement over a potential name change for the group, which has long appealed to moderates for its stances on fiscal responsibility and national security.

Reps. Abigail Spanberger, D-Va., and Mikie Sherrill, D-N.J., are among the lawmakers departing.

Seven remaining Blue Dogs, all male members, form the group's smallest roster in nearly three decades of its existence. Politico said a potential freshman member remains undecided on joining.

For some of the departing members, the main issue was the group's name. They wanted a rebrand to the "Common Sense Coalition" to help rid the bloc of its reputation as a socially moderate, Southern "boys' club."

Several members believed the Blue Dogs name had a negative connotation that kept their colleagues from joining, Politico reported.

Other members disagreed, saying they saw no reason change a longstanding legacy.

A Democratic polling firm found that some lawmakers still held outdated conceptions of the Blue Dogs, whose ranks have included the party's last lingering opponents of same-sex marriage and abortion rights. Also, the group arose from the remnants of the so-called Dixiecrats, white Southern Democrats who supported segregation.

Politico, citing nearly a dozen sources, reported that Blue Dog members met earlier this month to debate the rebrand. A secret-ballot vote resulted in the new name being rejected.

That resulted in exits by Spanberger, Sherrill, and Reps. Ed Case, D-Hawaii; David Scott, D-Ga.; Brad Schneider, D-Ill.; and Lou Correa, D-Calif.

"The Blue Dogs have never prioritized having a large coalition — our members look to have a focused, effective group that can influence the Congress regardless of numbers," Andy LaVigne, the group's executive director, said in a statement.

Returning Blue Dogs insisted that not all the departures resulted from the disagreement about the group's name. They cited such things as departing members' potential ambitions for statewide office.

The group continues to wield influence in the new GOP-led Congress because only four Democrats willing to side with Republicans could sway a floor vote.

Blue Dogs began the 2022 cycle with 19 members, only 13 of whom remain in office after the midterms.

© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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An internal disagreement about rebranding the centrist Democrat "Blue Dog" coalition led to the group nearly being cut in half, Politico reported.
moderate, house, democrats, blue dogs, name
383
2023-37-24
Tuesday, 24 January 2023 02:37 PM
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