Thursday, March 5, 2009

STL DPB On The Road: Who I Met Yesterday, or, The Halls Of Power

A remarkable thing about the United States is that ordinary people can have personal access to their congresspeople and senators. Our little group of Missourians from the Arthritis Foundation had appointments yesterday to see one of our senators, Christopher Bond, a Republican, above left, and the U.S. representative for the district where I live, Russ Carnahan, a Democrat. Neither had much time to spare (Carnahan had to run off for a vote on the floor) but both were congenial and welcoming. The House and Senate office buildings are open to the public. Anyone can walk in to petition their government.

Bond has been in the senate for 22 years. Today is his 70th birthday. He announced recently that he will not run for a fifth term when his present one expires in two years. Carnahan has been a member of the House of Representatives for four years. His father was governor of Missouri. Mel Carnahan ran for the U.S. Senate but was killed in a small plane crash during the campaign. His name remained on the ballot and he won. For the strange story of what happened after that,
click here.

I'm giving the Thursday Arch Series a week off. There will be something or other from back in The Lou tomorrow.


cieldequimper said...

Same here! You can access the equivalent of congressmen quite easily, it's a bit harder for senators.

Virginia said...

And you didn't miss a photo op either!! Way to go Bob!
Nice portraits. Where are the flamingo dancers though??

Anonymous said...

Really interesting photos of these two. One is obviously at the end of his career, his whole face smiling and jovial; the other is clearly just getting started. Look at the way the younger is holding his hands, in a self-comforting grasp. His mouth smiles but his eyes do not. A bit of a sneer, perhaps. And I have to wonder just how easy it would be for someone in a lower class/profession than you to get access to these politicians. As usual, your photos continue to make me ponder the world. Brilliant!