ST. LOUIS – Republicans have been running all summer with the wind at their backs – now the fall breeze has offered the Missouri GOP a boost, too, in the form of a stimulus gust blowing towards the opposition.
The $107 million in stimulus cash awarded to Tom Carnahan, however, couldn’t have come at a worse time for his siblings, both of whom are on the ballot in November.
While Tom Carnahan has been in the wind energy business for several years – he formed St. Louis based Wind Capital Group in 2005 – the announcement made on Friday by the White House that his wind project in northwest Missouri will receive stimulus cash presents an unwelcome liability for the family’s political aspirations.
Tom Carnahan’s wind project was one of several listed on the reported released by Vice President Joe Biden last week, “100 Recovery Act Projects That Are Changing America.”
Still, All Republicans need is the perception of coziness to slam Tom’s sister, Democratic Senate hopeful Robin Carnahan, and brother, U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan.
“When it comes to the Barack Obama’s $814 billion boondoggle known as the ‘stimulus,’ it’s all in the family for the Carnahans,” Lloyd Smith, executive director of the Missouri GOP, said in a statement. “Robin Carnahan supported it, Russ Carnahan voted for it, and now Tom Carnahan is profiting from it.”
Tom Carnahan’s firm received what’s called a 1603 Grant, made specifically for alternative energy producers in the stimulus act.
For Republicans, Tom Carnahan’s stimulus funding is a a double boon – they can use it to both needle Robin and Russ.
Republican Ed Martin is already calling on Russ to ask his brother to give the money back.
“I am writing today on behalf of the many unemployed constituents of your district to request your brother forfeit his $107 Million in stimulus money,” Martin wrote to Russ Carnahan. “I believe that money could be better spent on job re-training to help small business startups right here in your district.”
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