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DeVore’s attack ad against Boxer is a reach

It’s been less than a month since Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, R-Irvine, announced he’ll be vying for the GOP nomination to run against U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., in 2010, and he has wasted no time in putting together his first online attack ad. It seems a little long on bluster and a little short on facts, better geared toward turning opinion against House Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., than against Boxer.

From the Associated Press:

The idea of the visitor center dates back to the 1970s, and in 1991 Congress authorized funds for planning.

But momentum for the project did not come until 1998, when a mentally unstable man burst through the doors of the Capitol, killing two police officers before being subdued in the office of then-Republican Whip Tom DeLay. That impressed on lawmakers the need to move security stations for visitors away from the main building. The groundbreaking ceremony took place in 2000.

And while the funding has been complex, it’s hard to see how DeVore lays it at Boxer’s feet.

Oversight of the Capitol Visitor Center’s planning, engineering, design, and construction is vested in the U.S. Capitol Preservation Commission, a bipartisan panel of lawmakers on which Boxer does not and has never served.

Also, it looks as if the money to cover the center’s cost overruns was earmarked via the annual Legislative Branch Appropriations bills; it looks like $70 million in 2002, $49.8 million in 2004 and $44.2 million in 2006. The Senate approved the conference reports on those bills by unanimous consent in 2002 and 2004, and on a 96-4 vote in 2006. And those spending bills were authored, respectively, by then-Rep. Charles Taylor of North Carolina; Rep. Jack Kingston of Georgia; and then-House Appropriations Committee Chairman Jerry Lewis of California, with — all Republicans.

So how is this Barbara Boxer’s problem?

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.