With Recovery Act funding running out, that old TPM favorite — the anti-stimulus Republican who takes credit for stimulus funding in their district — is becoming somewhat of a rarity. But Rep. Frank Guinta (R-NH) kicked it old school on Thursday by cutting the ribbon on a new road that received millions from the same spending bill he opposed.
Guinta spoke at the opening ceremony for Raymond Wieczorek Drive, a new access road connecting various towns to the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport. Later he posted a picture of the event on his official Facebook page. Other attendees included Gov. John Lynch (D) and New Hampshire House Speaker William O’Brien.
“It’s going to help us with our tourism, our economy, and it’s going to provide us greater flexibility for our residents, our business commuters, and those visiting our state,” Guinta said at the event. “It’s a real example of how when we put our mind to it we can accomplish anything we want to accomplish.”
Guinta, whose campaign press office did not immediately respond to a request for comment, has been a tough critic of stimulus spending. His campaign website declares that he is “against the Obama stimulus package that has yet to bring us jobs” and he called on his 2010 opponent to “finally agree with the rest of us who believe her failed stimulus package was a waste” in a press release.
According to the Department of Transportation, the $175 million project got a boost from $15 million in cash from the Recovery Act, money that Lynch said helped accelerate the road’s construction. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood visited Manchester in 2009 to highlight it as an example of the kinds of useful projects that the stimulus was being used to fund.
“I’m glad to be back in New Hampshire to get a fresh look at how this state is investing
Recovery Act dollars to improve transportation and create good-paying jobs,” LaHood said at the time. “Working together, we’re going to revitalize our economy, save
jobs, and make long-term investments in the kind of infrastructure that the people of New
Hampshire need and deserve.”
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.