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Moran, Tiahrt trade jabs over earmarks

None of the GOP’s 4th Congressional District candidates mentioned Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Goddard, when they vowed to eliminate earmark spending by Congress. But in condemning earmarks at a weekend debate, were they also criticizing Tiahrt, who, as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, has been skilled at obtaining federal funding for local projects? The campaign of Rep. Jerry Moran, R-Hays — Tiahrt's opponent for the Senate — claimed so. Campaign communications director Dan Conston released a statement Monday saying, "It's interesting to see the very people running to replace Todd Tiahrt openly rebuking him and his signature issue: earmarks." The campaign also said that Tiahrt "is part of Washington's spending problem." Tiahrt's campaign communications director, Michelle Schroeder, responded by accusing Moran both of hypocrisy and ineffectiveness: "Jerry Moran may not be as effective as Todd Tiahrt in securing federal dollars for his constituents, but he sure tries — including the more than $17 million in earmark requests this Congress."