Tea Party Turncoat Embraces Obama in NY Congressional Fight

Representative Nan Hayworth of New York, first elected with support from the anti-government spending Tea Party movement in 2010, is aiming for the political center in this year’s campaign against a Democrat trying to dredge up her past.

Hayworth, 52, vowed two years ago to “slash federal spending” and attacked “King Barack and his out-of-control Congress,” referring to President Barack Obama and the Democrats who then controlled the Senate and House. Now she boasts of bringing federal money to her district, tells a local television interviewer that she has been “eager to work with Democratic colleagues and with the president all along,” and touts co-founding the Common Ground Caucus with Democratic Representative David Cicilline of Rhode Island.

Though she voted twice for House Republican budgets that would replace traditional Medicare, in her literature and commercials she promises to “fight to keep Medicare safe and reliable,” as images of her elderly parents are shown.

“She was elected on a Tea Party tsunami,” said Representative Steve Israel of New York, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, referring to the electoral wave that swept Republicans into the House majority. “Now the tide has receded and she is left high and dry with her voting record.”

For Hayworth to win re-election, she has to persuade voters to cross party lines because enrolled Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district that covers much of the lower Hudson Valley.

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