The easiest way to tell we are about to enter another election season is not necessarily the campaign ads or hyped up rhetoric- but rather the attempt by the national media to try to stir up a scandal among Mississippi Republicans. No it’s not our friend Tim Hamburger at the Bloomberg Press, but rather Matthew Mosk at the Washington Post this time.
Here is the best story they could come up with: Sen. Roger Wicker recently secured an earmark in a defense appropriations bill for one of his largest campaign contributors when he was on the Appropriations committee in the House. They then located a new facility in Wicker’s district, bringing about 200 new jobs with them when they hit peak production.
So, the end result- we have a Congressman using his influence to bring jobs to his district. Is this not what we send them to D.C. to do? Needless to say, the Democrats were not too happy to hear this. We need to look no further than the administration of Ronnie Musgrove to see Democrats don’t think to highly of job creation; as Mississippi lost about 30,000 jobs during his term.
The Dems apparently weren’t happy with the use of earmarks either:
“Roger Wicker is the poster child for quid pro quo politics, repaying campaign cash with an even more generous earmark,” said Wayne Dowdy, chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party.
Earmarks are a two-way street, and until Democrats condemn Gene Taylor and Bennie Thompson (who love the pork as much as Wicker and Pickering), they really have no business talking.
They also have no business talking about a conflict of interest:
“Sen. Wicker was elected to look out for the people of Mississippi, not to fill his campaign coffers. When the moving company relocates Wicker’s things from his House office to his temporary Senate office, I hope they leave the revolving door behind.”
Trading campaign contributions for jobs has been a hallmark of Mike Moore and Jim Hood. Have we forgot about Patterson and Scruggs and Langston and Balducci, Mr. Dowdy?
Filed under: 2008 Senate, MS Democrats, Roger Wicker