On the day they faced another hurdle to their re-election hopes, Democratic U.S. Reps. Heath Shuler and Mike McIntyre of North Carolina voted with Republicans on a bill to cut federal spending and call for a balanced budget amendment.
Shuler and McIntyre are members of the "Blue Dog" coalition of conservative Democrats. They were the only Democrats from the Carolinas to vote Tuesday for a GOP-sponsored "Cut, Cap and Balance" bill that set out strict spending limits and calls for a balanced budget amendment in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.
In separate news releases today, the group Americans for Limited Government called each man's vote "nothing short of heroic." Each, it said, is "one of the last true Blue Dogs, putting country ahead of party."
On Tuesday, Republican state lawmakers unveiled new congressional districts that put McIntyre, of the 7th District, in the 8th District with fellow Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell. And Shuler saw his 11th district get slightly more Republican.
One Republican lawmaker, state Sen. David Rouzer, today announced his candidacy for the 7th District.