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Lawmaker Gosar Tests Tea Party Tenets Against Local Needs

U.S. Representative Paul Gosar came to Washington promising to slash federal spending. It took less than a month for local officials in his Arizona district to learn that he was talking about them.

When Flagstaff city administrators came to his Washington office Jan. 20 seeking funding for a $65 million flood-control project, they left with the first-term Republican’s promise that he would send a letter of support, not the millions in funding delivered by his predecessors. There wasn’t much more he could do: Pressure from freshman lawmakers such as Gosar prompted House leaders to impose a one-year voluntary ban on members funding pet projects through earmarks.