Redlands, California (AP) — Former Republican Rep. Jerry Lewis, who became a community hero by spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a project in the endorheic region of southern California, was criticized as a model for pork-barreled spending It was. Abused and died. He was 86 years old.
His death was announced in a statement by Republican Republican Ken Calvert. He said on his website that Lewis “had a tremendous impact on his district, California, and our country.”
Culvert said: If all of our civil servants worked tirelessly and effectively for the people they represent, like Jerry Lewis, our country would be a much better place. “
For nearly half a century, Lewis has risen from the local school board to become one of Capitol Hill’s most powerful figures, leading the House Expenditure Committee. He announced his retirement in 2012.
Dawn Rowe, supervisor of San Bernardino County, tweeted that Lewis “will be remembered as one of the most influential lawmakers in the history of our region.”
Claremont McKenna College political scientist Jackpitney, who worked for Lewis in the mid-1980s, tweeted that he “embodied politeness and transpartisanness.”
“He wanted to get things done. He wanted to make the law, not just the (political) issues,” Pitney said in an interview.
Lewis, who headed a strong housing spending commission from 2005 to 2007, poured federal dollars into his favorite projects through the so-called yearmark, a spending order included in the bill. His district included parts of San Bernardino and Riverside counties east of Los Angeles.
These landmarks are the Loma Linda University Medical Center’s Cancer Research Center, Seven Oaks Dam, and a large-scale logging effort in the San Bernardino National Forest, which is said to have reduced the risk of wildfires in the area, Riverside Press. Contributed to the establishment of the enterprise. , California, reported in 2012.
In fiscal year 2010 alone, he secured nearly $ 100 million for his district and was consistently ranked as one of the country’s leading yearmark winners.
But his work also attracted federal oversight. The Justice Department investigated whether Lewis improperly directed a federal project to a client of a friend or ex-colleague, but closed the investigation in 2010 without taking any further action. Lewis denied cheating.
Lewis hoped that the DOJ’s decision would help him chair the Expenditure Committee when the Republicans held control of the House of Representatives, but he lost the bid.
He was a frequent target of the Washington, DC-based non-profit Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, and government surveillance groups claimed to have improperly directed federal dollars to campaign donors.
First elected to the House of Representatives in 1978, Lewis attended the California State Legislature before winning a seat in Parliament.