Using a children’s story to make his point, Rep. Nick Rahall voted against a House-passed bill intended to trim government spending by some $40 billion over five years.

Rahall and Rep. Alan Mollohan, both D-W.Va., joined all other Democrats in the House in opposing the measure, which cleared 212-206 in a partisan vote.

Only nine Republicans and one independent opposed the bill.

“While America’s wealthiest got early Christmas presents this year, this reverse Robin Hood Congress hit everybody else hard,” Rahall said Monday.

Rahall said he opposed the GOP-lead budget because it slashed student and child support programs by some $12.7 billion, while retaining a $10 billion give-away to insurance firms.

“This budget, should it become law, will have disastrous effects to the pocketbooks of southern West Virginians and will have lasting and long-term consequences to the nation,” the 3rd District congressman said.

“The values we hold as a nation, and the values of all southern West Virginians, were devalued in the dark of night.”

Rahall also complained the Republicans filled a Defense Department appropriations measures with a laundry list of special interest items that weren’t vital to the safety of the troops, or care of veterans.

“It was a calculated move and there was no chance to amend the must-pass legislation,” he said.

“I voted in favor of the bill to support our troops, and provide them the tools they need to complete their missions and return home safely.”

The same measure also authorized oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

All three members of West Virginia’s delegation in the House voted for the defense appropriation.

— E-mail: mannix@register-herald.com

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