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My Latest Big Government Post on Rep. Bachus

This is cross posted from its original publication, Andrew Breitbart’s Big Government

Local Reaction to Congressman Spencer Bachus: Respond, Reform, or Resign

by    Dr. Gina Loudon   

There  is a forgiving nature in the Southerner that surprises the
occasional  Yankee visitor. Doors are opened, ladies are escorted off of
curbs, and  conversation is edifying. There is a sharp but tailored
critique of  wrongdoing, and forgiveness comes as easy as the gentle
southern gulf  breeze—but only once. Part of the charm of the south is
the genteel way  they approach human interaction–until, that is, you
cross them. Expect decisive correction. I have come to know that this is
how the  south “weeds” out its own bad, so that the genteel southern
tradition  continues.

The southern tradition of civility is deeply rooted. That is why the short selling of the American economy by Alabama Congressman Bachus, as described on 60 Minutes
last Sunday, and his pursuant refusal to explain, apologize, or make
reparations to his constituents strikes them as so abhorrent. Alabamians
are asking for the honorable removal of the Congressman who did the
dishonorable.

The following is a letter sent Monday to his office, after one sent Sunday evening went unanswered:

Mr. Staley:

This is my second attempt at communication to you and your Congressman’s office.

I  am looking to give you and/or Congressman Bachus an opportunity to
speak in his defense to his constituents before they organize an all
out protest of his non-response on what appears to be a horrible
injustice against the citizens of Alabama, and the American economy.  He
is welcome on my show today any time between 4 and 7 pm.

I  will be diplomatic to my guests, Mr. Staley, but non-response from
an  elected public servant and his staff is wholly unacceptable and
will  result in a relentless pursuit of the same.

I am not only an engaged Republican, Tea Partier, and show host, I am his constituent.

Please respond to my Producer, Jason (cc’d), ASAP.

Thank you,

Dr. Gina Loudon

The congressman’s office sent a written statement in response to the interview request as follows (edited for brevity):

…Congressman Bachus is not available for an interview for the show, but we did want to send along the statement given to 60 Minutes and to others in the media who have asked about this.

Congressman  Bachus makes sure to comply with the law and House
Ethics rules, and  his financial transactions are publicly disclosed.
Chairman Bachus does  not trade in financial sector companies over which
the Financial  Services Committee has jurisdiction.

Tim Johnson

Press Secretary

Rep. Spencer Bachus (AL-6)

The  office offered nothing in terms of a personal apology,
restoration to  American taxpayers, commitment to reform, or other
“non-canned” answers  for his constituents. A follow up letter with
suggestions as to the  former is drafted, and the Congressman’s response
will be reported here,  as well.

Local  Alabama reaction has been starkly consistent in terms of a
call for him  to respond, or in some way even acknowledge that his
voters are angry.   Michael Hart, Talk Show Host on popular FM station WYDE said:

While investing in a company a Congressmen maintains
oversight  on is not illegal, the practice does raise several serious
issues… since  US Congress members are briefed by their staffs on most
issues they vote  on, these staffers are often privy to the same
information… they… are not  forbidden from taking advantage of this
information. Each new person  added to this ‘group of insiders’ becomes
another potential conduit for  sensitive information to leak out and
could even encourage lobbying of  Congressional Staffers by investors
seeking to exploit what they know.

Another  potential problem is the possibility that a
Congressman may be  motivated to vote on policy or regulations that
might not best serve the  interest of the country or his constituents if
there is a direct  financial benefit for voting another way.

Local Tea Party activists are already planning a protest of his office this week to ask for his response to the accusations.

Zan Green, President of the largest Tea Party
in Congressman Bachus’ district said, “while not illegal… according to
the Congressional Standards (specifically), this practice shows how far
DC has gone from being a place that works for the US citizens and the
Country as a whole, to a place to enrich one’s self.”

Andrew Breitbart has called for the Congressman’s resignation, as has Investor’s Business Daily,
and others including myself  (if Bachus doesn’t acknowledge his
constituents).  Alabamians are willing to clean house when it comes to
corruption, and most are focused on restoring the credibility of
conservatives after they perceive that some have used their offices
inappropriately and dishonored conservatives as a whole. The title given
Congressmen is “honorable.” Alabamians expect the “honorable” to act
honorably.

He needs to:

1. Admit it was wrong (even if not technically illegal), and/or

2. Send the money to charity, or the American taxpayers, and/or

3. Step down from the Financial Services Committee, and/or

4. Commit to real ethics reform.

The reality is that no one truly expects this Congressman to do the right thing.  Listeners to The Dr. Gina show
described a town hall meeting where people were asking some tough
questions and Bachus angrily stomped off stage, saying, “I don’t need
this.”  I am told this happened more than once. The question then
becomes if he refuses to answer to his district and the country as a
whole, what happens next?

The  Congressman has no choice but to resign or face a constant
firestorm from  Tea Party and other GOP activists who are working hard
on self-policing  the standards of behavior for their membership as they
look ahead to  the 2012 elections.  And if this Congressman has seen
the tenacity of  those in the Tea Party who believe they are fighting
for the life of  this country, he would be wise to respond.

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