Saturday, December 24, 2011

John Tanner was Heath Schuler's mentor??

Those election losses enabled Shuler to rise in the group’s leadership and gain visibility on key fiscal issues.

“I think he’ll be a real player,” said John Tanner, a former Blue Dog congressman from Tennessee who is now vice chairman of Prime Policy Group, a Washington lobbying firm. “As the middle gets hollowed out in Congress, the ones who are left who are truly in the middle will be more sought-after, not less.”

Tanner, whom Shuler considers a mentor, said the ex-football player showed his fiscally conservative streak before he came to Congress. When Shuler signed with the Washington Redskins in 1994, he saved his bonus and lived on his salary alone — “not the modus operandi of most professional athletes,” Tanner noted.

“Plus, he was a quarterback,” Tanner added, “and they’re just natural leaders.”

Shuler is well-liked by members of both parties, according to Tanner and Allen Boyd, another former Blue Dog congressman and mentor.