Bill Enyart entered the 12th District congressional race late, which meant he had to get up to speed fast. That probably was good training for the brisk pace of Congress.
He barely had been sworn in when the Air Force announced that Scott Air Force Base isn't currently being considered for the new refueling tankers. That's a major concern because the 126th Air Refueling Wing is Scott's only flying mission. Without new tankers, everything could change for the base.
Enyart could have a full-time job trying to ensure Scott gets tankers in the next round of consideration. But other big issues also await him: Gun control. The Farm Bill. The debt ceiling.
Gun control gave Enyart a chance to show that even though he has a D after his name, he will be an independent voice. He called it "disappointing" that Obama issued executive orders placing new federal restrictions on guns rather than let Congress implement laws. It's reassuring that a newly elected congressman would publicly criticize the president -- especially because he is a fellow Democrat and a fellow Illinoisan.
One of the reasons Enyart's predecessor Jerry Costello was so effective was that he spoke his mind and his vote could never be taken for granted. Enyart is a quick study.