The hair, the leisure suits, and the fact that he is out of prison -- but perhaps not out of northeastern Ohio's heart -- makes former Rep. James Traficant very interesting.
Released from federal prison last year after serving seven years on corruption charges, the former congressman known for ending his floor speeches with "Beam me up, Mr. Speaker" is running as an independent back in his old stomping grounds.
Traficant was only the second member to be removed from Congress since the Civil War, by a vote of 420-1.
That being said, some of his floor statements were -- as Chris Farley used to say -- awesome.
It was just over 14 years ago that Traficant delivered a speech for the ages. No, it probably doesn't rank up there with President Kennedy's bold challenge to reach the moon or President Reagan's "tear down this wall" address, but it was one worth noting.
Here is one example of Traficant’s style.
Singling out the Department of Agriculture's Environmental Quality Incentives Program for questionable spending, Traficant said: “After years of studies and reports, and after hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars, the Department of Agriculture has come to several conclusions.
No 1: Big farm animals produce more manure than small farm animals.
And No. 2: Manure stinks. Beam me up, Mr. Speaker!
200 million dollars to determine that manure stinks. I think these environmentalists over at the Department of Agriculture have been smelling too many methane fumes...”
If you would like to see him on the air here are some links to see his speaking style:
Remember to sign up for the ASIS International Akron-Canton Chapter and SACS Consulting sponsored event on Thursday, October 28, 2010 from 7:30 to 9:30 am at Ohio Prestwick Country Club in Uniontown, Ohio. It is $20 per person, payable at the door, and all are welcome. A reservation is required and can be made by calling Alma Gasper from SACS Consulting at 330.255.1101 x306 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.