Got an email today from my Congressman, Harry Mitchell. Somehow they got my email address and sent me a nice email promoting Mitchell’s new website, which of course promotes all the great and wonderful things Harry Mitchell is doing to improve my life.
And to top it all off — I’m paying for his emails and his website!
Ironically, at almost exactly the same time, I got an email from the Goldwater Institute exposing the level of abuse of taxpayer funds by Arizona politicians to promote themselves.
The title is: “Shameless self-promotion: How politicians use your money to get re-elected.”
I have some familiarity with the concept, having run for Governor against then-incumbent Janet Napolitano, who happily spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of our money to promote herself. And actually, there is much more than the report reveals — as author Shawnna L.M. Bolick notes, the totals represent only “the tip of the iceberg.”
Most disappointing to me is the presence on this list — in a big way — of politicians, including some friends, who are conservatives. The temptation to use your office to build name ID must be extraordinary, but I hope this report will encourage conservatives to abandon this practice as a violation of our commitment to fiscal integrity with taxpayer funds. There are plenty of ethical ways for an incumbent to stay in front of voters while performing legitimate functions of the office.
Take the time to read the report, and let your legislators know how you feel about your tax dollars being used for self-promotion rather than legitimate governmental purposes.

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