Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Should I Give Henry Waxman Money?

With my much-loved Nancy Pelosi's Speakership secure, I don't care that much about converting another Republican seat into a Blue Dog seat. And while there are some vulnerable Democrats I'm interested in defending -- Tom Perriello's international human rights heroism makes me interested in helping him -- there really aren't many people on there who I see as having a big progressive impact.

So I'm starting to think that it might be time to throw some money at the awesomest legislator in the House, Henry Waxman, in hopes of giving him a big pile of cash that he can use for various wonderful Waxpurposes. Like: gaining influence for his Waxprojects by donating his stash to other Congresscritters. I've read so many awesome articles about Henry Waxman that I can't remember which one I heard this from, but apparently one of the secrets to his success was making contributions from his personal stash to other Congressional Democrats. This was effective in causing them to cast excellent Waxvotes.

If you're wondering why I'm being so Waxlaudatory here (I promise that's the last one), let these Henry Waxman Facts be your appetizer:

In the midst of the Reagan era's cutbacks, Waxman expanded the number of working poor eligible for Medicaid a stunning 24 times.

For virtually the entire 1980s, Waxman blocked Dingell and the Reagan administration from weakening auto emission standards. At one point, he blocked a key vote on a bill to debilitate the Clean Air Act by introducing 600 amendments, which he had wheeled into the room in shopping carts.

He publicized an obscure EPA report that established secondhand smoke as a carcinogen, uncovered the onetime Philip Morris lab director who had determined that nicotine was addictive, and publicly grilled tobacco company CEOs about their failure to share that fact with the public.

And then, for your main course, you can read Charlie Homans' piece in the Washington Monthly on how Waxman always wins. I guess I should keep our Klein/Yglesias streak unbroken by linking to today's Ezra Klein interview for dessert.
Post a Comment