The complete story is here, but longtime Pennsylvania congressman John Murtha has died.Â He was the first pro-military Democrat to come out against the Iraq War and his efforts helped fuel the anti-war effort as it caught fire.Â He was 77.
Murtha died from complications following gall bladder surgery.Â From the story:
Murtha died at Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, Va., surrounded by his family, his office announced. He had been hospitalized for a little more than a week with complications from gallbladder surgery.
Although his turn against the war in 2005 made him a national figure, Murtha was known inside Washington for decades as the consummate behind-the-scenes deal maker, an old-line power broker and physically-imposing figure who unrepentantly delivered billions of federal dollars to his home state.
In his later years, Murtha became a favorite target of critics demanding an end to Congress’ earmarking largesse, a personification of the power of pork. Contractors and lobbyists close to him were the target of federal corruption probes. He, however, was never charged with a crime, nor found to have committed an ethical breach.”
Murtha has been called out by local Congressman John Campbell for the earmarks Murtha delievred to his district.Â With federal earmarks accounting for only $16-$18 billion on a federal budget of $3.6 trillion, earmarks are a drop in the pocked and Murtha’s share of this for his direct even less than a drop.Â Campbell opposes any earmarks for our local district forcing strapped state, county and city budgets to deliver critical infrastructure projects or relying on the courtesy of others in the OC congressional delegation to deliver for CD-48.