Senator Tim Johnson: Good Man, Wrong Party
Here's the way one news outlet described Senator Johnson's illness: "Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) has been diagnosed with a congenital blood disorder known as arteriovenous malformation, or AVM, and remains in critical condition following emergency surgery last night. "
We don't know much more right now (the next night).
I may be one of the world's most ferocious Republicans, but obviously I wish Senator Johnson well. He has a fine wife (Barbara, a social worker and former college professor), and three children, one of them stationed stateside with the U.S. military.
He votes his S.D. constituency, which is one reason I like him -- and why people like Barbara Boxer and Dick Durbin secretly despise him. I'm sure they love his vote when it comes to determining who leads the Senate.
If you'd like to know more about who Johnson is, well, good luck. Being from South Dakota and not (thank goodness) being Tom Daschle, he doesn't have a high profile. In fact, he hardly qualifies for a low profile.
If you want to know his voting record, well, you'll have to wait for Friday. Hint: he is a true moderate apparently -- not a "Specter moderate" (liberal) or "Chaffee moderate (extreme liberal), but a real middle-of-the-roader.
Tonight on MSNBC, Mark Green, the Naderite n'eer-do-well from New York, speculated that the Republican governor -- if Senator Johnson doesn't survive -- might do a "profile in courage" and select a Democrat.
Not likely. The Republican Governor of S.D., Mike Rounds, is a hard-right conservative, pro-life and anti most things that have occurred since the New Deal.
By the way, guess who's the mostly likely opponent for Johnson if he can run for re-election in 2008? It's one Mike Rounds, who would be the favorite to defeat Johnson, who won by a handful of vote in 2002.
I do hope that Tim Johnson resigns his position (soon) as U.S. Senator and goes home to a fine state and a great family. That won't happen, but it's nice to imagine.
In the meantime, he certainly has the Maloney family's prayers and best wishes.
Secret tidbit: he voted "yes" on the nominations of John Roberts and Samuel Alito.