By Sean Wardwell
Much like Dorothy of the Wizard of Oz, Todd Tiahrt wants to “pull back the curtain” on Jerry Moran, saying while Moran might be a good person, he would be a bad senator.
In a town hall meeting at The Well on Wednesday, Tiahrt again made his case for why he would be a better U.S. Senator than his rival Moran. Speaking to an audience of 30 people, the Goddard congressman pulled no punches when speaking about Moran’s accomplishments.
“(Moran) wants to be popular. He keeps his finger in the wind. His list of accomplishments is very shallow,” Tiahrt said, adding Moran voted against parental notification on abortions.
During his speech, Tiahrt says there are five things that need to be done in Washington D.C. to set the country right again – tax reform, regulatory reform, returning health care to the private sector, litigation reform and energy security.
“Being secure in energy is difficult to talk about with the greatest environmental disaster in our nation’s history going on today,” Tiahrt said. “But, why are we drilling 5000 feet under the ocean?”
Speaking with The Sentinel after the town hall, Tiahrt said that representing the 4th Congressional District gives him an advantage in representing the whole state.
“The fourth district is probably the most versatile, as far as the Kansas economy, of any district. There’s agriculture, there’s manufacturing, there’s a strong public sector and urban versus rural” Tiahrt said. “I’ve had to deal with the broadest spectrum of problems of any representative. You have to be a senator in order to match the broad spectrum of challenges I’ve had.”
Tiahrt also addressed the negativity surrounding his race with Moran – a race that has seen some of the sharpest rhetoric in a primary election in this state. Tiahrt contends that the negativity started with Moran.
“It was a year ago, last fall, when Moran claimed that I was corrupt because I lived in Washington D.C. A long time ago he started this negative campaigning, and I was quiet about it for a long time. I didn’t say anything and I went on talking about my business, talking about my vision,” Tiahrt said. “When I went on TV, I talked about his votes for tax increases. I don’t consider it negative when I talk about his record that I document. He considers that negative because he’s embarrassed by his votes for higher taxes, and he wants to consider that negative campaigning. I’m not making stuff up.”
“When he says I’m corrupt because I moved my family during the school year to Virginia, to me that’s negative,” added Tiahrt. “He’s going after my family. I think it’s him that’s gone negative. I’ve just talked about his record. It’s like Harry Truman, when he said, and I’m paraphrasing, people think I’m giving them heck. I’m not giving heck. I’m just talking about the voting record and it sounds like heck.”
Tiahrt appeared with radiologist Dr. Milton Wolf who is President Barack Obama’s second cousin. Wolf has been a vocal opponent of Obama’s health care reform legislation.
The Republican primary will be held Aug. 3.