Ryan has pushed for earmarks around the same time he started complaining about the practice. He also lobbied for stimulus money while objecting to President Obama's spending bill. And in at least two instances involving the Department of Transportation, Ryan has pushed the interests of companies whose members have given him campaign donations, according to records obtained by The Huffington Post.
Steering transportation funds, or weighing in on regulations, is one of the most direct ways a congressman can exert influence. Ryan is certainly not the only politician to attempt to influence the DOT over its decision making. But the fact that Ryan was willing to go to bat on behalf of campaign donors drives against the narrative Ryan has long claimed -- that he is a special kind of politician, more saint than sinner.
Ryan's spokesman said the newly minted vice presidential nominee has done nothing improper. "The folks who have contributed to Congressman Ryan over the years have done so because they support his vision and agenda, not the other way around," Brendan Buck, Ryan's spokesman, said via email.
In 2004, Ryan wrote Norman Mineta, the Secretary of Transportation, on behalf of the chemical company PPG Industries. The company's PAC has contributed $6,750 to Ryan's campaign coffers from 1998 through 2012. Ryan began by saying he was "writing to share the concerns" of the company over a proposed rule concerning the transportation of hazardous materials.
Trolls are the dog-piles in the lawn of life. When you find one, it's best just to scrape the malodorous mass off your shoe and move on. You are not likely to establish a meaningful dialogue with a turd.