As far as distraction strategies go, Republican state Rep. Abigail Whelan might want to polish up on her tactics because invoking your religion to dodge an unrelated question is just not acceptable under any scenario.
Democratic state Rep. Paul Thissen, along with everyone else in the Minnesota House of Representatives, were in for a surprise when he asked the second-term House legislator if she supported an amendment that would close offshore tax loopholes used to avoid tax competition.
“Do you think benefiting people who are hiding money in Liberia is worth raising taxes on your own constituents?” he asked.
Whelan responded by outright ignoring the question.
“It might be because it’s late and I’m really tired, but I’m going to take this opportunity to share with the body something I have been grappling with over the past several months, and that is, the games that we play here,” she began. “I just want you to know, Representative Thissen and the caucus — I forgive you. It is OK, because I have an eternal perspective about this.”
She did not stop there.
“I have an eternal perspective and I want to share that with you and the people listening at home that at the end of the day, when we try to reach an agreement with divided government we win some, we lose some, nobody is really happy, but you know what, happiness and circumstances — not what it’s about,” she continued. “There is actual joy to be found in Jesus Christ, Jesus loves you all.”
Whelan then pleaded for everyone “listening at home” or “here in this room” to email and call her if they wanted to know more about it.
“I would love to talk to you about Jesus, he is the hope of this state and this country,” she concluded, the offshore tax havens completely forgotten.
As the Think Progress pointed out, Whelan not only avoided the question, she later voted against the amendment as well, like all other Republicans in the Minnesota House.
The amendment was defeated in a party-line vote.
Thumbnail Credits : Minnesota House of Representatives