Story on Jenkins failed to give her all ‘no’-ness credit

This is to apologize to Rep. Lynn Jenkins for misstatements in the report of a public meeting she held last Tuesday at Allen County Courthouse.
She said she was proud to be a member of the “Party of No” and proud of her votes against the budget and other initiatives by the administration and House Democrats.
Working from that statement, I mistakenly said she had voted against the appropriation bills as they came up. Wrong. The staff member who called me said she had voted for several appropriation bills. Of course. This is a common dodge: Vote against the budget which doesn’t actually spend money but is only a broad outline of the administration’s fiscal plan — then vote for the appropriation bills that DO spend money and make voters happy.
Sorry, Rep. Jenkins. Didn’t really mean to make any Kansas voter believe you were against the farm bill or military spending.
I also described the economic stimulus bill that she voted against — along with every other Republican in the House — as having broad bipartisan support. Wrong again — if Congress is the only bunch of Americans whose voices count. The fact is, of course, that the administration’s $785 billion stimulus package did have broad support across the na-tion. Economists, bank-ers and others from both parties who work in the finance industry were particularly fervent in their advocacy of additional federal stimulus to prevent the economy from sliding from recession into another depression.
Just last week Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said the economy had stopped receding and that a recovery had begun. Bernanke, perhaps the most acclaimed scholar of the Great Depression, gives federal intervention credit for the turnaround. He is joined by many economists in that conviction.
But, yes, Rep. Jenkins, I certainly should have said that you and your fellow Republicans opposed it unanimously and have earned the negative nickname, “The Party of No,” in spades.
Only the future will tell the nation whether “no” was the wisest response to proposals for action against the deepest recession the nation has faced in over 50 years.

— Emerson Lynn, jr.