March 9, 2008

Go Team Physics

OK, maybe just one more thing about politics, but only because it involves yesterday's election of a physicist to Congress.

Bill Foster, formerly a particle experimentalist at Fermilab, just won the seat formerly held by Republican Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, in what was supposedly a solidly GOP region.

Mr. Foster defeated James D. Oberweis, a dairy company owner, in a contest for the 14th Congressional district, a long swath that runs from the far western suburbs of Chicago nearly to the state’s Iowa border. He will fill the remaining months of Mr. Hastert’s term.

Mr. Foster won with 53 percent of the vote, while Mr. Oberweis had 47 percent, The Associated Press reported.

“Back in the laboratory, this is what we’d say was a pretty successful experiment,” Mr. Foster, a soft-spoken man who makes regular references to his science background, told a crowd of supporters at a banquet hall in Aurora. “You sent a clear message to everyone in Washington. You demanded change, and you are demanding it now.”

Since this was only a replacement election he'll have to run again in November, but it still sends a "clear message to everyone in Washington:" physicists get things done.