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John Kline's Record

Disclaimer: The author of this site maintained the campaign weblog of John Kline's opponent in the 2006 election, which made Congressman Kline a bit testy.

As with all blogs, review the facts carefully and draw your own conclusions.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

John Kline: Reliably Opposed to Ethics and Oversight

This isn't exactly news, but I didn't want to let it pass without comment. About two weeks ago, the U.S. House of Representatives, for the first time in history, established an independent ethics oversight panel. Nancy Pelosi deserves a lot of credit for getting this done; it faced considerable opposition, and not just from Republicans:

The final vote, 229 to 182, belied the measure's controversy in the House; 159 Republicans and 23 Democrats opposed it. Even with two House members under indictment, two others sent to prison, and several others under federal investigation, nearly half the House did not want to submit the body to the scrutiny of a panel not under its control.

It should come as a surprised to no one that John "he doesn't need to talk about ethics; he's lived it" Kline voted against creating this ethics committee; moreover, he and the rest of the obstructionists came within one vote of preventing an "up or down vote" on the measure.

Despite my opposition to Kline on the issues, I have no reason to believe he's guilty of any breaches of ethics. So why is he opposed to an ethics oversight panel which Congress so obviously needs? Is there something going on we don't know about, or is he simply trying to protect the sizeable number of GOP legislators who might be exposed by such oversight?

Sunday, March 09, 2008

It Can Happen Here

That's an ominous statement. It is typically used to refer to acts which were once unthinkable in America --- a President routinely declaring his intent to ignore all or part of the laws passed by Congress, unchecked government surveillance of citizens, arbitrary arrest and detention of citizens, and government-sanctioned torture. But of course, George Bush and his enablers (like John Kline) have ushered in all of those things in the past 7 years, with remarkably little outcry --- indeed, Bush just reaffirmed his devotion to torture yesterday.

However, that's not what I'm referring to here. Rather, I'm referring to the fact that the NRCC lost the race for Denny Hastert's old seat in a special election yesterday.

I would like to think that Bush's blatant and repeated violations of the letter and spirit of the Constitution --- and congressional Republicans' complicity in it --- are a big part of the reason. This is a solid conservative district, a seat Hastert had held for 20 years. What's more, the NRCC outspent the DCCC 2-to-1 to hold this seat, and they still lost.

If it can happen in IL-14, it can happen anywhere. John Kline's back-to-back 16-point re-election wins mean nothing.