Where have all the cowboys gone?
In 1964, one of Arizona's own ran an energetic and inspiring bid for President. Now we have Congressman Jeff Flake. He, like Senator Barry Goldwater, is not afraid to buck party leadership and stick to principles.
A June 24th article ("Rep. Flake takes stand against 'pork'") notes that Flake took a controversial stand and promised never to ask for federal funding during the rest of his House career. Arizona's 6th Congressional District should feel honored to have such a maverick and principled representative.
Moreover, the state Legislature could learn a thing or two from Rep. Flake. If the legislators at the state Capitol could practice the same kind of commitment to fiscal restraint, Arizona would not have to endure the never-ending parade of ballooning appropriations bills that produced an unprecedented deficit.
Flake's position is irking his profligate colleagues--with good reason. The congressman's stand against pork is a much-needed change on the normally opportunistic political landscape (Arizona already receives $1.12 for every $1 sent to the federal government anyway.)
We should be so lucky to have others follow his lead because the cowboys have all but disappeared.
--Satya Thallam, Phoenix
The writer is a fiscal policy researcher at the Goldwater Institute.