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January 10, 2014 3:49 PM Luncheon Meat

By Ed Kilgore

As an especially interested observer in the U.S. Senate race in my home state of Georgia, with its crowded and festive wingnut-a-thon GOP primary, I’ve long figured the “Establishment” favorite, U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, wasn’t going anywhere. He’s a congressional veteran—and worse yet, an appropriator—and just looks out of place trying to rant and snarl at Big Government as a transmission belt for redistribution of wealth from Successful Christian Folk to those people, which is what the market demands. When he tries, he just winds up looking foolish.

Case in point: Kingston’s tried to demagogue the School Lunch program, but in so doing walked right into a trap, per this report from TPM’s Daniel Strauss:

Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) warned that there’s “no such thing as free lunch” for school children in Georgia, but he seems to have enjoyed a few.
An investigation by Georgia’s WSAV channel 3 found that Kingston, who is currently running for Senate and recently suggested students work cleaning cafeterias in exchange for lunch, had expensed as much as $4,182 worth of lunches for his office over the past three years.
“Kingston and his staff expensed nearly $4200 in meals for business purposes to his congressional office, paid for by the American taxpayer,” WSAV 3’s Dan Kartunen reported. The amount could have purchased nearly 2,000 Georgia school lunches.
WSAV also found that Kingston also racked up $4,289 of free meals paid for by third-party groups like the Georgia Bankers Association and the Congressional Institute. Kingston has also travelled to a handful of continents on congressional business racking up $24,313 in costs. Those expenses include more than just meals. What’s more, Kingston also expensed $145,391 worth of meals for campaign events.
In December Kingston, who is against a federal lunch program, also argued that poor students should sweep floors in exchange for lunch.

I continue to think the man’s dead meat in the Senate primary—maybe dead luncheon meat.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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