The Center for Public Integrity
Rep. Pete Sessions, the firebrand conservative from Dallas, Texas, has relentlessly assailed the Democratic-passed stimulus law as a wasteful "trillion dollar spending spree" that was "more about stimulating the government and rewarding political allies than growing the economy and creating jobs."
But that didn’t stop the Republican lawmaker from reaching his hand out behind the scenes to seek stimulus money for the suburb of Carrollton after the camera lights went dark and the GOP campaign against the 2009 stimulus law quieted down.
The affluent city’s rail project is “shovel-ready,” Sessions wrote Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood in February, urging his cabinet agency to give “full and fair consideration” to the city’s request for $81 million in stimulus money, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Center for Public Integrity. Ironically, his letter suggested the project would create jobs, undercutting the very public argument he has made against the stimulus.
“Carrollton’s project will create jobs, stimulate the economy, improve regional mobility and reduce pollution,” the lawmaker wrote.
When asked about the letter, Sessions suggested to the Center that he did not want his “strong, principled objection to the bill to prevent me” from getting his congressional district its share of the massive spending pot.
Sessions was hardly alone.
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