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Worst Week in Washington

Who had the worst week in Washington? Democratic candidates who were cut off.

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By Chris Cillizza
Sunday, October 17, 2010

As the end of each election season nears, the national parties have to make hard choices about where to spend their precious remaining campaign dollars and -- more painful from a political perspective -- where not to.

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The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which is tasked with keeping the party in the House majority after Nov. 2, began to make those unkindest of cuts last week, walking away, financially and figuratively, from more than half a dozen Democratic candidates.

Call them "the Expendables," the first but certainly not last group to receive political pink slips from their party leaders. Among their ranks: Reps. Suzanne Kosmas (Fla.), Kathy Dahlkemper (Pa.) and Steve Driehaus (Ohio), as well as open-seat candidates in Tennessee, Indiana and Kansas.

The spurned candidates reacted predictably -- like when your longtime boyfriend or girlfriend abruptly announces that it's over.

Driehaus, a freshman congressman from the Cincinnati area, took to YouTube to deride his status as an Expendable. He also asked for money to "send a message to the DCCC and all Americans that when we voted for change in 2008, we meant it." And Tennessee state Sen. Roy Herron, running for a Democratic open seat in the 8th District, explained away the national party's decision to cut bait as the result of his promised refusal to vote for Nancy Pelosi as House speaker, should he get the chance.

Anger, of course, is just one stage of grief. Acceptance will come later.

"The Expendables," for being, well, expendable, you had the Worst Week in Washington. Congrats, or something.

Have a candidate for the Worst Week in Washington?

E-mail chris.cillizza@wpost.com

with your nominees.

Can't remember who had the worst week last week?


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