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Van Hollen Second Md. Democrat to Crash GOP Convention

Rep. Chris Van Hollen visited the RNC in Tampa.

TAMPA, Fla. - U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Kensington, on Wednesday became the second Maryland Democrat to show up in Tampa to challenge Republicans during their national convention. 

But unlike Gov. Martin O'Malley, who spoke at a Democratic Party office across the street on Tuesday, Van Hollen went inside the security perimeter Wednesday evening, doing an interview with Politico before talking to Capital News Service and criticizing the Romney-Ryan plan and the speakers at the convention.

Van Hollen, speaking at the convention center where most of the media is stationed, called the Romney-Plan "wrong for America."

"He's going to double down on windfall tax breaks on the rich like himself," Van Hollen said. "When the rich aren't going to pay a cent more, it's going to come at the expense of students, the middle class, and almost everyone else. President Obama's balanced approach is right for America."

He added that the Romney-Ryan plan would have a "very negative impact on the state of Maryland," because the tax breaks would hurt things like medical research at the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health.

Van Hollen pulled no punches describing Tuesday's convention events. "(Tuesday) night was a straight out personal attack on the president," he said. "What I watched was clearly going after the president."

Maryland Republican Party Chairman Louis Pope called Van Hollen's appearance an attempt to get Democrats media exposure, and supposed that Republicans would have a surrogate in Charlotte doing the same thing next week.

"They are trying to interject Democratic beliefs into a solid Republican setting," he said. "They should stay at their convention and we should stay at ours. They are trying to damage the enthusiasm in America for Mitt Romney. (Van Hollen) is going to be depressed on Nov. 6."

Stop the Waste August 30, 2012 at 09:11 PM
How do you all feel about paying for van holland to take a vaca to Florida instead of working here at home doing what we elected him for? Would you mind sending me some money so I can go to the convention and hang out. Also I need money for a hotel and food and entertainment while I'm there. And also those reports you need won't be done until I get back. Maybe if those in power (bipartisan) stopped feeling entitled to use our tax dollars for their every whim, we could afford to help more people with less of Brian's money.
Brian August 31, 2012 at 10:25 AM
No joke... really. My point was not that you could afford a Cadillac on government assistance - it was the abuse. In this day-in-age we should run a quick DMV check - if you own an expensive car and your on assistance, then something has to give. Furthermore, you have to report somewhere and actually *DO* something for the assistance and oh yeah pee in a cup for a weekly drug test too. Drug money agreed... combat that with a consumption tax in-lieu of a payroll tax. That'll hit everybody including the dope dealers. As to your Christ-like virtue- churches have programs in place to help those in need. Let me decide who to give my money too, I think I'm better able to decide that rather than the government. Self-righteous idiocy huh - how much have you contributed to charity when times where good or EVER? Why is it the liberals who are always preaching about helping the less fortunate are on the wrong end of giving? Conservatives give a whooping 30% more than liberals... from ABC news: http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=2682730&page=1#.UECNRKAU58E California to use federal money to reduce mortgage balance by up to 100,000. Again, wasteful. Why should my tax dollars go help people who made poor decisions. $100,000 per family... outrageous. Why just California? Are they more deserving? This is exactly what I am talking about. We already borrow .40 on the dollar. I pay an effective tax rate of 42% and that's not enough? You want more? 50% don't pay a nickel.
Brian August 31, 2012 at 10:27 AM
Well said.
Stop the Waste August 31, 2012 at 12:29 PM
You know on that note, why is the rnc in Florida at all? I know it's good for the economy of Florida but don't we have a little money problem right now? Why didn't the politicians decide to stay home for the conference? Have it in dc. They had plenty of time to consider locale. Dc has conventions centers and security experience. No travel, less lodging requirements (I would assume most politicians already have lodging in dc), less security expense... We really need to re-focus the spotlight on government waste. The money they already have could be working more efficiently instead of digging deeper into our pockets. And why is Ben Bernanke in Jackson hole? And why is the Dnc in Minnesota or wherever they're going? Someone needs to start a lucrative blog asking people for anecdotes of government waste. Huffington post could substantiate or deny. People could demand accountability. We could get some media attention and really fix something.
Thad Berry August 31, 2012 at 10:49 PM
Brian, I agree, there is obvious abuse in the system. President Obama's administration letter to states in July seems like a step in the right direction since it requests experimental measures in putting recipients to work, and off welfare. Better oversight and cracking down on abuse certainly needs focused improvement from all sides and parties. Nobody likes fraud or waste, even some Democrats (that's tough for Carroll County citizens to believe, but not every moderate and progressive is fiscally liberal).

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