Junk Bond

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John is a Vietnam veteran and retired business executive. He loves America and hates to see what’s happened in Washington the past few years. He believes in liberty and Constitutional limitations on government growth.

He called the Tea Party just to vent and to see if it’s just him.

Recently, John had called Senator Kit Bond’s (R-MO) office in Washington. He wanted to know whether stories that Bond had signed off a $659 million earmark for soy bean farmers were true.

According to John, the Bond staffer who answered the phone was terse, rude, and argumentative. She balked at being called a “lady,” though she couldn’t think of an acceptable alternative. She hung up on the constituent and veteran twice. She threatened to call the police if he called back.

John’s offense? He had the audacity to ask about the earmark and state his view that Bond and his staff are our employees.

I was not able to speak to anyone at Bond’s office to confirm, but John’s story wasn’t the first like it. Senator Bond, one of the biggest porkers in Congress, has a reputation for being rude to constituents . . . unless, of course, they come bearing campaign contributions. Now that he’s retiring from the Senate, even donors are in trouble.

Bond’s local office was more polite to John, but they still argued with him, claiming John’s assessment of Bond’s political career was unfair.

John contrasted for me his treatment with Senator Claire McCaskill’s (D-MO) office staff. McCaskill’s people were not only polite, they were polite while arguing policy with John. While John admits he can be short and direct, he felt that never went there with McCaskill’s polite, professional, and enthusiastic staff.

Now, I agree with Sen. Bond on most issues and I disagree with McCaskill on just about everything. (Same for Tea Partier John.) Where John and I have more in common with Claire than with Bond is on the point of customer service. Claire understands how to treat constituents on the phone; Bond simply does not.

Want to know why the Tea Party is viewed more favorably than the Republican Party? This story tells it all.

Wake up, GOP. You’re on the road to losing seats in 2010 rather than gaining them.