Thursday, May 22, 2008



Publication: The Republic

The Issue: Congressman's positions on wasteful government spending

Our Position: Rep. Pence's stances a slap at political expediency

Agree or disagree with him politically, even his most fervent critics would have to acknowledge that Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., is walking the walk in his position on wasteful government spending.

Pence, who represents parts of Bartholomew County in the Second Congressional District, raised several eyebrows several weeks ago, when he announced that he would not use the practice of legislative "earmarks" to gain Congressional support for local projects in his district in the 2009 budget year.

It's been a popular practice in Washington for several years and allows legislators to slip their requests into popular but often times unrelated legislation.

Few of his peers joined him in the effort, and some criticized the principled stand on the grounds that other legislators would simply get the money for their districts that could have gone to this area.

He took another principled stance last week, when he voted against a farm bill, the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008.

The bill passed the House by a wide margin, but Pence registered his opposition to the measure - which would benefit many of the farmers in his district - because of his belief the bill would cost American taxpayers more than $650 billion over the next 10 years.

His position on these forms of government spending likely will cost him some votes, especially since so many of his colleagues have followed merrily the traditional path of political expediency.
At least he is remaining true to his convictions.

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