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February 13, 2009

LaHood Unleashes TIGER

This post is by Kyle McEvilly, intern for the Sierra Club's Energy & Global Warming Team.

This is an exciting period for changing leadership in Washington, D.C., especially considering the newly-articulated Obama administration.  As a resident of the "Prairie State," I was thrilled to hear that Illinois Representative Ray LaHood would be receiving a high-level post in the President's cabinet.  I have full confidence in LaHood's appointment as Secretary of Transportation.

I first heard LaHood speak at the Midwest Energy Solutions Forum back in October while attending school in Peoria, Illinois.  I was immediately impressed by his strong convictions, straightforward manner, and genuine openness regarding the issues at hand.  Later in the semester, he spoke to my Bipartisan Leadership class at Bradley University.  By the end of his brief classroom visit, I was saddened that the people of Illinois would be losing this well-seasoned Republican to his impending retirement.  But Ray LaHood would be returning to public service sooner than anticipated.

Ray LaHood Earlier this month, the Secretary of Transportation introduced a new team charged with appropriately allocating monies from the economic stimulus package for transportation purposes.  The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) reveals the former congressman's "no-nonsense" attitude toward governmental accountability and fiscal responsibility.

LaHood claimed, "The U.S. Department of Transportation is ready to get the money out the door.  We now need Congress to pass a final bill."

It is reassuring to know that we have such an individual in Obama's cabinet who will employ a practical sense of politics in dealing with a national crisis.  In my opinion, there is no better person for the job than Ray LaHood.

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