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As Clay County Republican Chairman Ben Wierzbicki put it: “We brought in our heavy hitter.”
U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., made an appearance in Excelsior Springs yesterday to lend his support to state Rep. Bob Nance. Nance, a second-term 36th District Representative, is running for re-election against Democrat Barbara Lanning of Lawson.
“I know Bob or I wouldn’t be here,” Bond said to a crowd of 40 supporters. “I know him, mostly by reputation, but I know him. He is a really solid star, works hard and gets the job done.”
Bond also commented on Nance’s 30-year involvement in community issues, and being a two-time president of the Excelsior Springs Chamber of Commerce.
“He has fought for education and for the values and views of his constituents,” Bond said.
Nance praised Bond’s lifetime commitment to Missouri and called him “a true statesmen.”
“In some small way, that is what I have tried to do as your state representative. I have always done what I thought was right for our district. And I will continue to work hard for the interest and the people of the 36th District,” Nance said.
Nance referred to the national economy crisis occurring today, and said he is committed to spending cuts, yet increase teachers’ salaries to attract and maintain quality educators that will teach a 21st Century workforce.
Afterwards, Bond took questions from the audience. Ray County Farm Bureau Secretary Glen Waters asked the question on everyone’s mind: what is being done about the economy on the federal level.
“Ninety-five percent of Missourians didn’t want us to vote for it, but unfortunately, we were put in the position we had to,” Bond said about his vote for the $850 billion federal bailout. “We have to rescue the economy. It’s a worldwide credit crisis, and unfortunately, we had too much to do with it.”
Bond blamed the Clinton administration for starting the sub-prime mortgage problem by lowering qualifications for low-income home loans to people who could not afford them.
“We need to suspend mark-to-market. It was a bad decision by the SEC [Security Exchange Commission] and needs to be reversed,” Bond said.
Mark-to-market records the price of a value of a security or portfolio, including home mortgages, to reflect its current market value rather than its book value. The mortgage crisis has made it where “nobody is buying that paper,” Bond said.
“This has crippled all credit institutions and this economy depends on credit,” Bond said.
Bond cited a recent example of 900 universities nationally that could not get short-term loans to meet their payroll.
These Wall Street woes have made it rough going on incumbents.
“This is a tough election with lots of external factors,” Bond said. “This ain’t any picnic to run in.” said the senator.
Photo: Sen. Kit Bond shares a laugh with Clay County Republican Chairman Ben Wierzbicki, center, and state Rep. Bob Nance yesterday at The Hall of Waters in Excelsior Springs. Bond came to lend his support to Nance for his re-election campaign. (Photo by JoEllen Black/The Daily News)