Thursday, August 29, 2002

Hilleary Weighs In

Tuesday, I reported on the clash between Clement and Alexander over some VA hearings that Clement held. Alexander called them political stunts and Clement roasted him over his lack of a military record, one that Clement has in admirable abundance. It was a very bad move by Alexander.

Yesterday, Lamar!'s problems deepened as Republican gubernatorial candidate Van Hilleary spoke up -- in Democrat Clement's defense! As reported by the Commercial Appeal:
Republican gubernatorial candidate Van Hilleary said
Wednesday that U.S. Reps. Bob Clement and Bart Gordon were "doing
their jobs as congressmen" when they held hearings on problems at
Tennessee veterans hospitals last week....

Hilleary, who is a congressional colleague of Clement and Gordon,
wouldn't address fellow Republican Alexander's campaign charge but
said, "I think Bob Clement very properly helped raise that issue and
raise it in a way that brought it to the attention of policymakers."
It should also be noted that Hilleary had recently completed some veterans' hearings of his own, a point journalist Richard Locker makes in the story.

Lamar!'s spokesman, Kevin Phillips, made the usual "he was right anyway" noises, but no question that Alexander has stepped into it. Hopefully, he can just drop it and move on, before it sticks and becomes a larger, front page story.

Which I'm sure Locker and the CA would love. The CA always reports on internecine Republican squabbles, but you rarely see that kind of reporting from the Democratic side, where it's all sub rosa.

Until next time,
Your Working Boy

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