Interesting Little Point

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November 11, 2009 3:05 p.m.

TPM Reader MT points out that the only Republican to vote for the Dems’ health care reform bill is also one of, I believe, only two in the House GOP caucus with any actual experience living in a Communist country, as opposed to the fantasy-Tea Bag version of Communism / Socialism / Fascism / Dictatorshipism.

That’s Rep. Joseph Cao (R-LA), who came to America as a refugee from Vietnam.

The other is Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R-FL) who was born in Havana in 1954, though I’m not clear in what year Diaz-Balart left Cuba, which could bear on the question.

To be clear, I tend to think Cao’s district may be the prime motivator here, not his early life as a refugee, though his Catholicism may also be a factor.

And as long as we’re on the topic, are there any other House Republicans who began life in Communist states?

Late Update: Okay, we’ve got a third: Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL). She was born in Cuba in 1952. It’s funny. Diaz-Balart’s younger brother is actually in Congress too. And I thought and confirmed that he was born in the US. But I forgot about Ros-Lehtinen. Any others?

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