2nd District

Kline wants preview of Obama speech to see if it’s OK for kids

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

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If anyone isn’t convinced that Rep. John Kline has taken on a new role in the Republican Party, a letter the congressman sent to the White House yesterday might make them a true believer.

Kline, the top Republican on the House Education and Labor Committee, sent a letter to President Obama requesting a preview of next week’s speech to millions of students so that parents can determine whether it is appropriate for children. The speech has been billed as the first time “an American president has spoken directly to the nation’s school children about persisting and succeeding in school.”

“Just as parents are able to review a textbook before it is used or consider a planned field trip before children leave the classroom, public consideration of your remarks in advance of the live address would ensure parents can review them, make an informed decision about whether the material is appropriate for their children, and engage them accordingly,” Kline wrote along with Republican Policy Committee Chairman Thaddeus McCotter, R-MI.

The four-term congressman noted that “questions have arisen” about the purpose of the speech, and said a preview of the text would “facilitate the public’s understanding” of the event. Alexa Marrero, a spokeswoman for the Republicans on Kline’s committee, said several House members have approached them with concerns from constituents about Obama delivering a political speech to students.

Part of that concern, Merrero added, arises from the Department of Education’s suggested activities and discussions for schoolteachers. Though the DoE instructions have since been revised, they once encouraged students to write themselves a letter discussing “how to help the president.”

Following the release of Kline’s letter, the White House said it would post the text of the speech online, though it’s not clear how far in advance, according to the Washington Post.

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Veterans for Congress: A winning strategy?

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007

Steve Sarvi and Aswhin Madia are joining about a dozen other Iraq and Afghanistan veterans running for Congress this election cycle.

sarviSarvi, who just returned from a deployment to Iraq with the Minnesota National Guard, is running against incumbent Republican John Kline in the Second Congressional District.

Madia, who was a Marine captain working as a lawyer with Iraqi judges and attorneys, is madiarunning for the seat in the Third Congressional District left open by the announced retirement of Republican Jim Ramstad. Both Sarvi and Madia are DFLers.

A closer look at the Sarvi and Madia candidacies can be found here.

U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, a Pennsylvania Democrat, is currently the first and only Iraq War vet elected to Congress. Congressional Quarterly recently reported that 15 men and women who have served in the current war are running for the Senate or House in one of the 79 House districts rated as potentially competitive.

What does being a veteran bring to a candidacy?


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