Pubdate: Mon, 26 Nov 2007
Source: Politico (US DC)
Copyright: 2007 Capitol News Company, LLC
Author: Tom Angell


As he often does, Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) ignored the facts and 
engaged in ad hominem attacks in his Nov. 20 letter, "Politico - 
Ideological Prism?"

Instead of disputing Politico's report that Rep. Souder incorrectly 
labeled the American Federation of Teachers, the National Council on 
Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, the United Methodist Church and 
others as "drug-legalization groups" because they oppose a law he 
wrote that strips financial aid from college students with drug 
convictions, the congressman decided to attack the credibility of 
reporter Ryan Grim.

While this should be shocking behavior for a member of Congress, it 
isn't surprising at all in this case. Rep.  Souder has repeatedly 
refused to engage in a real debate on the facts about his penalty, 
which has stripped financial aid from more than 200,000 students, 
instead flippantly labeling any and all critics as drug legalizers.

If Mr. Grim truly had a biased agenda because of his previous 
employment in drug policy reform, rather than an interest in 
reporting on a newsworthy dispute, why would The Hill and 
Congressional Quarterly have subsequently picked up the story?

Surely, Rep. Souder would have us believe it's because they, too, are 
part of a vast drug legalization conspiracy that includes not only 
members of the news media but more than 500 prominent organizations 
specializing in education, substance abuse recovery and faith that 
have called for Congress to overturn the student aid elimination penalty.

Tom Angell

Students for Sensible Drug Policy

Government Relations Director

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