Posted: 10/25/14 11:21
by Dave Mindeman
The Star Tribune endorsed Kline again - like they did last year. Their reasoning included convoluted statements like these....
It's that expertise, and a strong record of getting serious legislation enacted, that has earned Kline a return trip to Congress despite a reputation that has been tarnished by his coziness with for-profit colleges.
Voters would be shortsighted to dismiss a candidate with Kline's clout. The silver-haired representative deserves their support, with the caveat that he needs to more aggressively hold disreputable for-profit colleges accountable.
As for that serious legislation that he has enacted, here is the list:
Kline has struck an impressive balance between enacting major legislation (workforce training, steadying student loan interest rates) while still tending the home fires. An example: Kline was a strong advocate for building a new overpass for a dangerous Hwy. 52 intersection in Goodhue County.
Kline's work on legislation to protect child sex trafficking victims is also commendable, as is the legislative fix he championed to help members of the Minnesota National Guard and other soldiers get overdue bonus pay. In addition, Kline has cast sensible votes to raise the debt ceiling and resolve early 2013's "fiscal cliff." He was not among his party's radicals.
Workforce training was enacted after the House Majority rejected extending unemployment benefits over and over. The student loan "steadying" resulted in an increase in rates from 3.4% to 5.9%. (Really?) The sex trafficking legislation came just recently....and who is going to be favoring sex trafficking for kids? The National Guard bonus pay could have been put in last year's endorsement because it happened last term. And Kline's "sensible" votes? The debt ceiling vote came after he stood with his radical friends in a previous vote that got the nation's credit rating downgraded and caused a near stock market crash....and of course, TARP.
In six terms, Kline has a handful of these "bipartisan" success stories. And most of them come just prior to election cycles.
But what I find especially gauling is this....
He's also capable of putting on impromptu foreign policy seminars when he sits down with the Editorial Board, using knowledge complemented by his 25 years in the Marine Corps and his travels to war zones while in office.
Seriously? Military expertise? John Kline supported the Iraq War debacle. He has supported keeping troops everywhere. And he supports more boots on the ground in our current conflict with ISIS. Kline loves war.
The idea that he can regurgitate his military travels can't make up for the fact that he is completely wrong on foreign policy.....and totally out of step with the feelings of his district.
The Strib endorsing Kline was expected. They like the idea of having a House Committee Chair to talk to.
But their reasoning is ridiculous - and being bought by the For Profit College lobby is not something to be dismissed as an after thought.