Earlier this week, Bill Maher and the producers of his cable talk panel show, Real Time With Bill Maher, revealed that they are going to present a new segment on their show through Election Day. The plan is to receive suggestions from the audience on the worst person in Congress. Once they’ve reached a consensus pick, they will highlight all of the terrible things that person has done in their tenure and hopefully create enough negative press to help that person lose in this year’s mid-term elections.
Ahead of tonight’s episode, perhaps we can help give Maher some suggestions. While there are all kinds of god-awful Tea Party Representatives in the House, it really won’t help to pick them to highlight on Maher’s show. While you can have a field day presenting the greatest hits of Louie Gohmert, Joe Wilson or Steve King, it isn’t really going to help as they are entrenched in their districts. Same goes for trying to get a high profile House member like John Boehner or Eric Cantor ousted. It just isn’t going to happen, even with Bill Maher using his bully pulpit week after week.
Instead, the focus should be on a district that is projected to be at least somewhat competitive. This way, Maher can truly use his show for advocacy and make a real difference. It is all about energizing liberals, getting independents to commit and educating those who normally don’t vote. On that note, here are a handful of GOP incumbents that I think Maher should think about highlighting.
Michael Grimm (R-NY)
Grimm is already looking at a troubled reelection campaign, as he has had nothing but bad press lately. Of course, he made national news when he recently threatened to kill a news reporter who had the gall to ask him a question about his current campaign-finance scandal. Grimm represents Staten Island, which went for Obama in the 2012 election. Grimm won his first election in 2010 by tight 3-point margin and won in 2012 by seven points.
Mike Coffman (R-CO)
Coffman is part of the Tea Party Caucus. During his reelection campaign in 2012, he hinted that President Obama is not American, basically throwing red meat at the birther movement. He also said that he felt the President would utilize the military right before the election to guarantee his victory. He represents a district that voted for Obama in 2012 by 5 points. He barely won reelection that year, as he defeated Joe Mikloski by less than 7,000 votes.
Dan Benishek ( R-MI)
Benishek represent a district in Michigan that supported Mitt Romney in 2012. However, he barely got elected himself, as he defeated Democrat Gary McDowell by less than 2,300 votes. Benishek only got elected in 2010 due to his district’s opposition to the ACA. However, he has gone out of his way during his tenure to say idiotic things, especially about climate change.
Gary Miller (R-CA)
I actually covered Miller’s district and reelection odds in detail a few months ago. He is a member of the Tea Party Caucus and is known for being a money-grubbing, greedy opportunist. He also tried to pass off Arkansas as a foreign country when discussing immigration reform to DREAMers last summer. Roll Call has determined that his seat is likely to flip. However, it still might be a good idea for Maher to focus on him and make sure that he is soundly defeated.
Feel free to use the comments section to offer who you think Maher should target. There are lots of good choices out there!