The Corner

“Bridge-to-Nowhere” Congressman Busted Again

Rep. Don Young (R, Alaska), the man behind the “Bridge to Nowhere“, is in trouble again over an earmark:

[Coconut Road], a stretch of pavement near Fort Myers, Fla., that touches five golf clubs on its way to the Gulf of Mexico, is the target of a $10 million earmark that appeared mysteriously in a 2006 transportation bill written by Representative Don Young, Republican of Alaska.

Mr. Young, who last year steered more than $200 million to a so-called bridge to nowhere reaching 80 people on Gravina Island, Alaska, has no constituents in Florida.

The Republican congressman whose district does include Coconut Road says he did not seek the money. County authorities have twice voted not to use it, until Mr. Young and the district congressman wrote letters warning that a refusal could jeopardize future federal money for the county.

The Coconut Road money is a boon, however, to Daniel J. Aronoff, a real estate developer who helped raise $40,000 for Mr. Young at the nearby Hyatt Coconut Point hotel days before he introduced the measure. […]

When he was approached near the House floor by a reporter, Mr. Young responded with an obscene gesture.

It seems Mr. Young forgot the words of John Murtha, who once told an undercover FBI agent attempting to bribe him: “I want to avoid [arousing suspicion] by having some tie to the district. That’s all. That’s the secret to the whole thing.”