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Meehan Finds Not a Moment to Waste

Tom Williams/Roll Call

I think theres going to be natural tension thats going to exist through this entire process because were doing some pretty remarkable things. ... This is going to be a long, hard slog, he says. But I dont see myself as being a freshman or part of the freshman class against leadership. I see myself as a Member of Congress.

The pace is sometimes exhausting, he concedes.

I think part of the adjustment here is understanding that you cant be all things to all people, he says, glancing at a cluttered desk topped with thick binders.

The realities of governing sometimes cloud the wave of excitement that immediately followed the 2010 midterms, and his planned 2012 re-election race already looms. (I intend to run [again] for the House, he says.)

Democrats have targeted Meehans district as a 2012 pickup opportunity. Its one of just 14 nationally that was carried by Obama and Kerry, but is currently occupied by a Republican.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is pushing news that an ex-Meehan employee is under investigation for soliciting campaign donations on his behalf inside the U.S. attorneys office.

Meehan says that most days he sees the big picture. Hes reading former Speaker Henry Clays biography to put all of this in perspective, the incredibly history of this institution, and its role in American history, he says.

I dont pretend that Im anything more than a participant in this, Meehan says.

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