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Iraq Veterans for Congress

2:08 PM, Feb 11, 2008 • By BRIAN FAUGHNAN
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The Democratic party did lots of things differently in 2006 to help them win a majority in the House of Representatives. Among those changes was the decision to run Iraq war veterans in a number of competitive races. Most of them lost, and among the few who did win, it doesn't seem as if their veteran status made a big difference. Nevertheless, they attracted a great deal of attention and helped Democrats change the view of voters about their party.

This year, it seems that the majority of Iraq veterans running for Congress will be Republicans. And they're working together to attract attention to their efforts. Last week I had the chance to meet with Kieran Michael Lalor, a former Marine Corps infantryman in Iraq, who's running for New York's 19th Congressional district (against an incumbent who professes moderation while being feted by George Soros).

Lalor is a bright, hard-working, and energetic candidate, who is proud to call himself a Reagan Republican. He seems likely to face a contested primary for the Republican nomination, but will undoubtedly earn a following as the campaign develops.

Beyond that, Lalor is also working to coordinate the efforts of Republican veterans of the Iraq war running campaigns in New York, Indiana, Florida, North Carolina, California, Ohio, and several other states. They include Eric Egland, who's a strong candidate in California's 4th Congressional district. Take a look at the list, and see if one of these American heroes may be running in your district.

With the passing of the Greatest Generation, the number of military veterans in Congress has been falling. The 2008 election may mark a turning point in that trend, and none too soon given the at times appalling lack of seriousness with which Congress deals with matters of national security.