The Truth About Tommy Sowers

Monday, July 5, 2010
Butler County Tommy Sowers Ground Team at July 3 Poplar Bluff parade.

Lately there have been a lot of attacks thrown at Tommy Sowers; I'd like to set the record straight. Mr. Sowers' opponent, Jo Ann Emerson, has tried her hardest to make sure Sowers' is tied in to the national Democratic Party, and painted as an outsider. In fact, Ms. Emerson has said an awful lot about Mr. Sowers, but very little about herself. Last week a Team Emerson member submitted a story about Tommy, and Emerson's name wasn't mentioned once. I'll get to Ms. Emerson's record, but first I'd like to talk about Tommy.

Tommy Sowers is an incredible man of integrity: he's a soldier, teacher, and a true Missourian. Tommy was born and raised in Rolla, attended Duke University on an ROTC scholarship, then went on to become a Green Beret and US Army Ranger, serving two tours in Iraq and earning two Bronze Stars. Tommy also taught right here in the eighth district, at Missouri University of Science and Technology. For Tommy Sowers, this is a fight for home.

With a record like Tommy's, it would seem impossible to go negative; unfortunately, Team Emerson has found a way.

The Emerson camp has been slinging mud left and right lately, because they can't run on their own candidate's record and win. That's why they haven't accepted Tommy's requests to participate in a series of debates. They've attacked where Tommy's been and where his money has come from, pointing to a Saint Louis fundraiser with retired Four Star General Wesley Clark, and claiming Tommy said they were in the district at the time. Incidentally, General Clark already happened to be in Saint Louis, and Tommy got him to promise to come to the eighth district in the fall; he didn't claim they had already been there.

And Ms. Emerson's record certainly shows why they've gone so negative. Emerson voted against a 1.9 percent pay raise to our military, yet she voted for the bailouts. As a representative of our district, which has fallen to the poorest in Missouri and eighth poorest in the United States under her watch, Ms. Emerson should have known better. It's hard to believe the 70,000 veterans in our district would have voted against a 1.9 percent pay raise in our military. But this is the same woman who's voted multiple times against legislation supporting equal pay for women, even though our district has the lowest median pay for women in the country.

Finally, since Team Emerson seems to be so fond of talking about maps of our district, insinuating that Tommy doesn't know his own district, I encourage everyone to find a map of Maryland. You'll rarely hear Team Emerson mention it, but Bethesda, Maryland, happens to be where Emerson is from. Knowing she isn't even from the district, it's no surprise that 47 percent of her money has come from PAC donations, and that only 7 percent of those PAC donations were from ideological PACs. Furthermore, she's raised nearly 200,000 dollars, or 40 percent, of her individual contributions from outside the district. You know what they say about people with glass houses; well, maybe they don't say that in Bethesda, Maryland.

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