The crème de la crème
Note: This is a reprise of a story I wrote in May of 2011. That is the year that the Republican-controlled Legislature wanted to hack the government apart with a machete. It is also the year the government shut down for a period of time. You might remember that if you needed to stop for a bathroom break on I-90 that summer.
The article includes a video of of the inept questioning by now-attorney general candidate Republican Doug Wardlow, who had apparently missed his last anger management therapy session. It’s hard to talk when you’re about to pop your cork.
(May 26, 2011) Governor Dayton has observed that part of the problem with the Legislature is its Republican freshman class and their extremism. Let’s look at a prime exhibit: Doug Wardlow, freshman representative from Eagan.
Here’s Wardlow’s smarmy and insipid examination of Brian Rusche of the Joint Religious Legislative Council on the Governor’s budget; Wardlow is a member of the House tax committee. Watch and count how many times you cringe.
You really do have to wonder if Wardlow was born such an arsehole, or whether he has to work up to it every day by chasing the paperboy off the porch and giving every pedestrian he sees the finger while driving to work. It’s the old argument: nature vs. nurture.
Wardlow asks a series of ideologically-loaded questions – really just assertions – baiting Rusche. But Brian Rusche is a patient man, measured and thoughtful in response to the mumbling, fumbling and truculent Wardlow.
Wardlow asks, “If we give the government money to do good stuff, it reduces the amount of money given to private charity, huh?” A question in the form of challenge, but one you often hear from Wardlow types. I’ve even heard some go so far as to say that we need to give churches all the social responsibility as a salvation-earning opportunity for their parishioners. With a church full of Wardlows, I wouldn’t hold my breath.
Bradlee Dean’s sidekick, Jake MacAuley, also challenged the governor on health care at a news conference (I don’t have a link at the moment), saying it was the church’s responsibility. Watch the video in this post [sorry, the video is gone] and then decide how willing you are to let Bradlee and Jake be responsible for people.
Wardlow also asserts that taxes just go to a “bunch of bureaucrats.” Welfare cheats or bureaucrats, Doug, which is it?
In truth – and here’s a funny little secret – some of the tax money goes to Wardlow. No, I don’t mean his salary and per diem as a legislator, I mean the attorney’s fees he earns from eminent domain awards. It’s just another case of the government creating a private sector job.
But back to the main point: Wardlow, a genuine Cicero Lite, is one of the avatars for the Republican freshman class. Even better is the fact that he is a Republican legacy. That would seem to favor the nature side of the argument.
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