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RIP John Murtha, Titan of Pork Spending

Anthony Randazzo
February 8, 2010, 8:03pm

The Titan of pork barrel spending, Rep. John Murtha died this afternoon at the age of 77. He passed away in Arlington, VA from complications with a recent gallbladder surgery.

Murtha was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1974 from Pennsylvania's 12th District. He was elected to 19 terms. He served as a Marine officer in Vietnam.

And he was one of the most corrupt representatives in congressional history.

In September I wrote about "the airport Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) had built in Johnstown, PA, right in his home district. Over the past few years, the airport has received roughly $150 million in funds from the defense budget, and it got $800,000 in stimulus money.

"But it just so happens the airport only sees about 6,700 passengers… a year. Luckily, Murtha is the chairman of that wonderful little defense committee, dutifully guiding money towards the airport build largely so he could get from Dulles back to his home easier. Tyler Grimm wrote in The Wall Street Journal earlier this month:

'The usually barren airport—there were several times during the day I paced the building for 15 minutes and did not see another human being—has a lot of unused advertising space. But you can’t miss the large picture of John Murtha among a collage of Lockheed Martin workers at the airport’s center. It’s a monument to earmarks: “Partnerships Make a World of Difference,” the ad reads.'"

Read the whole bit here.

Read the USA Today's obit here.


Anthony Randazzo is Director of Economic Research


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