Rep. Pete Sessions is a vocal opponent of earmarks, but last year he scored one for a company that's not even in his district. Thanks to Sessions, $1.6 million for airship research went to a firm with no experience in either government contracting or blimp-making, Politico reports. Seems that a lobbyist who has made more than $446,000 working for the Illinois company—and has a criminal record—is a former aide to Sessions, the GOP’s House campaign head.
A rep for Sessions said the blimp would be a good use of federal money and would create jobs in Sessions’ district—but the firm is based in Illinois, with a branch in San Antonio, 300 miles from Sessions’ Dallas-area district. A firm exec says he and his father are “business people” overseeing the project and “have obtained world-class experts to work for us.” (Read more Pete Sessions stories.)