Freshman congressman Joe Courtney, elected by a margin of 83 votes, is learning that the first requirement of power is self-preservation.
When Joe Courtney, small-town Connecticut lawyer, knocked off a Republican incumbent in the closest 2006 congressional race in the country -- a margin of 83 votes out of more than 242,000 ballots cast -- he won more than a seat in the House of Representatives. He earned an ironic nickname: Landslide Joe. While in Washington, Landslide Joe stays in nearby Capitol Hill for a variety of reasons, among which is that he has no car in the city. He blew the engine of his old minivan back in Connecticut during the campaign, and he hasn't gotten around to replacing it. Not a fan of paying for cabs, he generally walks to places.
"It just never stops. Never," he says. "You better get used to liking that."