Friday, February 19, 2016

Craig Ford: Robert Aderholt has some explaining to do

  We need to let Congressman Robert Aderholt know we expect him to do his job and help us complete I-759 highway!

  When Congressman Aderholt speaks to the Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday, he has a lot of explaining to do.

  To start with, he should explain why anyone who wants to hear their congressman speak has to pay $25 per person. We elected him; we shouldn’t have to pay just to have the opportunity to hear him speak and ask him questions.

  Secondly, Congressman Aderholt needs to explain why he still hasn’t taken any action or brought back any money to help with projects like I-759, Hwy. 411, or the Meighan and Southside bridges.

  As I’ve watched this election unfold, I’ve noticed that Congressman Aderholt’s ads don’t mention anything about his record in congress or what he’s done for our district. Even though he is a senior congressman who sits on the House Appropriations Committee, these days he seems to be more interested in bringing tax dollars back for the University of Montevallo, where his wife sits on the board of trustees, than he does for his district.

  While the University of Montevallo is certainly deserving of support, they are not in the Fourth Congressional District. The only connection I see between Congressman Aderholt and the University of Montevallo is his wife.

  Instead of bringing money back for the places that hire his family, Congressman Aderholt should be bringing back our tax dollars to the district he was elected to represent!

  Sen. Richard Shelby has a history of brings our tax dollars back home, just like Tom Bevill did when he was our congressman. Congressman Aderholt sits on the appropriations committee and hasn’t brought one dime back for I-759.

  All Congressman Aderholt seems capable of doing is campaigning against a president who won’t even be in office a year from now. I get sick and tired of elected officials blaming President Obama for their own ineffectiveness. Elected officials should do the job they are elected to do, and quit blaming the president for their ineptness and inability to lead.

  Congressman Aderholt has been in office for a lot longer than President Obama, and during his time, he has voted for budgets that grew the national debt 266 percent (from $5 trillion in 1996 to $19 trillion this year). He wasn’t “standing up to Obama” then, and he certainly wasn’t standing up for us.

  The omnibus spending bill is a perfect example. Congressman Aderholt was the only Republican in Alabama’s congressional delegation who voted for it. His explanation? He said the omnibus spending bill is the, “last vestiges of Speaker Boehner's style of leadership.”

  So Congressman Aderholt’s defense is that he voted for the bill because John Boehner told him to, and we should all just be glad that Boehner isn’t there to tell him what to do anymore? Congressman Aderholt didn’t stand up to President Obama on the omnibus spending bill, and he wasn’t strong enough to stand up John Boehner either.

  It’s no wonder Congressman Aderholt can’t get us any money for I-759! You can’t be a leader and a puppet at the same time.

  Congressman Aderholt has 20 years in Washington, D.C. and sits on the most powerful committee in the House of Representatives, but he still can’t deliver for us. How can someone be a congressman for 20 years, vote for the president’s budget and still not be able to bring home the money for the I-759 extension?

  Is Congressman Aderholt going to blame the last 20 years of his congressional career on President Obama? If his wife didn’t tell him Happy Valentine’s Day, I think he would blame it on President Obama. I guess he will say anything to keep from getting out-right-winged and avoid a primary challenge from someone in the Tea Party's ranks.

  But if Congressman Aderholt spent half as much time fighting for his district as he does talking about how he’s “standing up to Obama,” then maybe he wouldn’t have to worry about challenges from Tea Party candidates and getting re-elected.

  Etowah is the largest county in the Fourth Congressional District, and road projects like I-759, Hwy. 411, Meighan bridge and Southside bridge not only serve Etowah county but also neighboring counties like Cherokee. Since Congressman Aderholt voted for the president’s budget, you would think he would have even more power to get some funding for projects in the district.

  The people of Etowah and Cherokee Counties have voted for Congressman Aderholt every time he’s run for office. It’s time he supported us the way we have supported him!

  My father always said, “When you get elected, never forget where you came from.” Maybe it’s time we reminded Congressman Aderholt where he came from.

  About the author: Representative Craig Ford is a Democrat from Gadsden and the Minority Leader in the Alabama House of Representatives.

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