As part of the news coverage of the swearing in of the new Congress one of our local newspapers provided a statistical analysis of the new Congress of 535 total Members. I have noted a few of their key findings below which in same cases I have converted to percentages for ease of discussion purposes:
- About 17% of the current Members of Congress are women
- About 25% of the current Members of Congress served in the military
When you look at the demographics of Congress this way it shows how substantial Grandma Pelosi's climb to power really is given the gender gap. Secondly, nearly 75% of Members of Congress have never served in the military which clearly shows that our country's military is truly civilian-controlled but on the flip side only 131 of the 535 Members have first hand knowledge of the lives of our military men and women. Given the likelihood that even more troops will be sent to Iraq I have to believe more military veterans will be elected with the 2008 elections.
I can't help but ponder the question -- "how would American foreign policy be affected?" -- if 50% or even 75% of the Members of Congress were military veterans. Would we enter more wars or less given their real world experience on the battlefield?
Boots on the ground wins elections,