The vote wasn’t even close.

Steny Hoyer is their man:

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats picked Rep. Steny Hoyer to be majority leader on Thursday, spurning Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s handpicked choice moments after unanimously backing her election as speaker when Congress convenes in January.

A Marylander and 25-year veteran of Congress, Hoyer defeated Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania in a vote of 149-86. […]

Hoyer’s margin of victory reflected a pre-election strategy in which he showcased support from moderates, veteran lawmakers in line to become committee chairmen and more than half of the incoming freshman class — the majority-makers whose victories on Election Day gave the party control of the House.

“Steny was more where the mainstream of where the party was,” said Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank, who will become chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.

And why did Congressman Earl Blumenauer of Portland, Oregon vote for Steny? Apparently, he spoke with both men and Murtha was WAY too interested in the politics of Iraq and less interesting in helping get the Dems agenda through.
Yet another sign that Steny is the right guy?

From BlueOregon comes this piece for the aforementioned Congressman:

Steny can help best not just by being committed to our work on Iraq, but being our caucus floor leader to fight for our entire agenda.

By experience, his voting record and advocacy for wide range of caucus priorities, including the environment and ethics reform, Steny Hoyer is the best choice for majority leader and won my vote.

As I had written earlier, this election was about more than the Democrats selecting a majority leader. It was a chance to demonstrate our character and our capacity to deal with differences. My sense is that we met that first challenge. Now it is up to us to see what we do from here.

Game. Set. Match.

Politics Steny Hoyer Wins, Moderate Dems Breath Easier