Boyda: “The New Center”
Published today and on newsstands this weekend, The National Journal's 2007 Vote Ranking issue is out- and Congresswoman Nancy Boyda is on the cover.
The cover story, called "The New Center," puts Boyda smack dab in the middle of members of Congress in the magazine's annual most liberal/conservative ranking.
Moving from a member on the radical extreme (Ryun as #1 most conservative) to Boyda in the very middle of the body, is a refreshing change for Kansans, who, certainly, are better represented by a centrist than by a radical on either end of the spectrum.
[Rep. Tim] Mahoney has plenty of freshman classmates to keep him company at the center, including Rep. Nancy Boyda, D-Kan. She said she viewed her moderate ranking as "third-party validation" of her nonpartisan approach, which, she emphasized, is "not based on ideology or beholden to a party."
"Kansans don't get involved in the politics," Boyda contended. "They want to know how the issues affect them." She is so independent that she has refused to join the House's moderate "Blue Dog" Democrats and has turned down entreaties to participate in party programs to promote her re-election. "I told [House Democratic Caucus Chairman] Rahm [Emanuel] in no uncertain language that I didn't care what he thought about how I should run my campaign," Boyda said. "I told him to leave me alone, and I won't tell him how to run [other] campaigns. After three weeks, he learned to leave me alone."
Boyda's centrism is all the more compelling because she defeated GOP Rep. Jim Ryun, who was the No. 1 most conservative House member in NJ's 2006 vote ratings. Ryun is trying to regain the seat this year, but he faces a primary challenge from a more moderate Republican.
Congresswoman Nancy Boyda: 203rd most liberal, 227th most conservative. Exactly where her district is: exactly in the middle of the country.
[Update: Congresswoman Boyda's office included the following information in a press release sent out announcing the cover story and we wanted to pass it along:
(Please note that the mention of the Blue Dog Coalition is slightly inaccurate. Nancy did apply for membership in the Blue Dog Coalition early last year, and at the time the Blue Dogs had reached their membership limit. Since then Nancy has found that not being a Blue Dog has helped to preserve her independence.)We think the other blog covering this race needs to issue a retraction..but, well, we know they won't.