Wednesday, March 17, 2010


The debate regarding Cong. John Boozman’s absence from Tuesday’s GOP Senate forum has been elevated a day after the event.

Today, a Democratic Party of Arkansas official suggested that Boozman’s reason for missing the debate – he was fighting the Democratic health care bill in Washington – doesn’t hold up to public scrutiny.

DPA spokesman Gabe Holmstrom highlighted Boozman’s four public votes in D.C. yesterday, none of which had any connection to the health care debate. Boozman cast votes on four innocuous resolutions regarding the post office, American Red Cross, Vancouver Olympics and a Chinese spiritual movement.

“After looking at the votes John Boozman cast yesterday, it is very clear he was not fighting anything when he voted for each of these resolutions,” said Holmstrom. “Why was Mr. Boozman’s campaign saying one thing in Arkansas while he was doing something else in Washington?”

Holmstrom noted that last night marked the third time Boozman failed to take part in a GOP debate.

“What is he hiding? What is he afraid of?” Holmstrom added.

Boozman campaign spokesman Patrick Creamer tells Talk Business, "Mr. Holmstrom seems very keen on getting Cong. Boozman away from his colleagues in the House in an effort to silence the overwhelming opposition to Obamacare that the people of Arkansas have to it. Apparently, he is in denial of the pressure that his good friends Speaker Pelosi and Leader Reid are applying on members of his own party to support this flawed initiative. Cong. Boozman is in Washington to fight their roughshod tactics on behalf of Arkansans. Political posturing from Mr. Holmstrom won’t silence that voice."

Add to the record this video from Boozman’s official Congressional web site. Boozman spoke on the floor of the House yesterday afternoon condemning the “deem and pass” procedure being debated in Washington.

“How in the world do you pass a bill without voting on it?” Boozman asked in a one-minute member speech.

Holmstrom, who attended the GOP forum, responded, “Well, each of the seven candidates last night pledged to do a lot more than give a one minute floor speech at 3 in the afternoon if they were in Congress.”

Creamer told Talk Business a day earlier that Boozman is expected to participate in future debates when “he is not required to be in D.C. representing his constituents, especially with a vote of this magnitude pending before the week’s end.”

On Wednesday, Republican Senate challenger Gilbert Baker’s campaign also responded to Boozman’s absence at the Tuesday forum.

“Interesting to learn the House actually did not have a scheduled vote on health care Tuesday,” said Baker campaign manager Alice Stewart. “Sen. Baker is committed to being in Arkansas, not inside Washington, to discuss the issues with the other U.S. Senate candidates during this campaign. We hope Cong. Boozman will join in the debate soon."