Ah, that paragon of fiscal virtue Congressman Rob Andrews!


Congressman Rob Andrews (D-NJ) is quick to lecture the DOD about fiscal accountability and treating taxpayers’ money.

During the latest HASC hearing on sequestration, attended by Deputy Secretary of  Defense Ashton Carter, he lectured the DOD about that, while endorsing sequestration, downplaying its disastrous impact, and proposing deep nuclear arsenal cuts and closures of bases – including strategic bases – abroad.

His proposals would, of course, be disastrous and foolish. The US nuclear arsenal, at just 5,113 nuclear warheads, is barely adequate to protect America and its treaty allies against Russia, China, and others. And while the US has to provide a nuclear deterrent not only for itself (which is, by itself, a huge task that allows no margin for error), but for 30 treaty allies as well – and these allies are watching closely and worrying as the US cuts its nuclear arsenal while Russia and China grow theirs. Any further cuts in the US nuclear arsenal would make the proliferation problem much worse.

America’s bases abroad are needed for power projection. Troops deployed in South Korea, Japan, and the Persian Gulf are able to react to any crisis immediately, and much more effectively, than troops stationed in the US, and deliver much more firepower by virtue of being closer to potential adversaries. During Operation Linebacker II against North Vietnam, bombers based in Thailand conducted more sorties and delivered more bombs than aircraft based in Guam, even though there were 3 times more bombers at Guam than in Thailand – because Thailand is much closer to Vietnam.

But let’s ignore that for a moment. Is Congressman Andrews a person really fit to lecture the DOD (or anyone else) about fiscal accountability and waste?

No, he’s not.

The Washington Free Beacon has reported that Congressman Andrews has misspent tens of thousands of dollars of taxpayers’ contributions on personal trips and celebrations:

“Rep. Rob Andrews (D., N.J.) is under scrutiny for taking several campaign-funded trips to California at a time when his daughter was trying to make it big in Hollywood.

The Hill reports:

According to an analysis by The Associated Press, Andrews spent $97,000 in campaign money on at least 18 trips to California in the last five years. At least four of the trips coincided with appointments attended by his daughter, Josie, at her record label, the analysis said. Records also show that Andrews raised about $260,000 for his campaign from California residents and groups during that time. Roughly six of the trips appeared to include major fundraising events.”

And now, the WFB reports, Rep. Andrews is under investigation by the House Ethics Committee:

Politico reports that the House Ethics Committee is looking into charges that Democratic Rep. Rob Andrews used his campaign treasury as a personal checkbook:

Reps. Jo Bonner (R-Ala.) and Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.), the chairman and ranking member of the Ethics Committee, said in a statement that they will take until Aug. 31 to decide whether to create a special investigative subcommittee to look into the allegations against Andrews.

This comes after a recommendation from the Office of Congressional Ethics — the independent ethics watchdog — to open a full probe into Andrews.

Andrews spent more than $9,000 in campaign donations on a wedding trip to Edinburgh, Scotland, in June 2011 that was first reported by the Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger. …

Andrews’ campaign also shelled out $10,000 that month for a celebration that combined his 20th anniversary in Congress with his daughter’s high-school graduation.”

See? The guy who lectures the DOD on fiscal accountability is himself guilty of misspending tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions. That’s the good old “do as I say, not as I do.”

Nonetheless, that has not stopped anti-defense hacks such as Laura Petersen of the so-called “Taxpayers for Common Sense” from hailing Congressman Andrews and his destructive proposals of defense cuts. Which only reveals the utter hypocrisy of these hacks.

 

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