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Artur Davis Taking On The Establishment Artur Davis Taking On The Establishment

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Politics

Artur Davis Taking On The Establishment

December 3, 2010

Outgoing Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala.) had some frank words for his party and, by implication, the Congressional Black Caucus in my interview with him for my column this week.

And he's not done splitting with his party on the most-pressing votes during this lame-duck session. He was one of only 20 Democrats to vote against his party's tax proposal, only extending tax cuts for the middle-class. And he was the only member of the Congressional Black Caucus to vote in favor of censure for ethically-embattled Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) on Thursday.

In some ways, that's not a surprise. Davis forged a centrist path in the House since being elected in 2002. But he still voted frequently with Democratic leaders - until mounting a campaign for governor of Alabama, after which he split with his party more often and voted like a conservative Democrat. He represented a new generation of African-American political leadership, and was one of the earliest backers of Pres. Obama's presidential campaign against Hillary Clinton.

It's easy to forget that Davis was floated as a leading candidate to serve as Obama's Attorney General, and may well have been tapped if he hadn't been planning a gubernatorial campaign back home. He likely would be charting a different path in the job than the current occupant, Eric Holder.

Davis told National Journal's Hotline that he's in the process of relocating to the Washington area, where he plans to practice law.

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