The Fix: Blue Dogs

Why the Blue Dogs’ decline was inevitable

It’s been a very tough cycle for Blue Dog Democrats, but Tuesday took the cake.

The caucus, which is filled with moderate and conservative Democrats, lost an up-and-coming member, Rep. Jason Altmire, in a primary with another incumbent in a merged district in Western Pennsylvania while one of the group’s founding members, Rep. Tim Holden, fell to a liberal primary challenger in the eastern part of the state.
Rep. Tim Holden (D-Pa.) on Tuesday became the latest Blue Dog Democrat to lose his seat in Congress. And he’s got plenty of company. (Dave Mckeown, AP)

The cumulative effect: For a caucus that featured 54 members last Congress and saw that number sliced to 26 after the 2010 election, the number could be halved again if things go really poorly this November.

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