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Our Opinion: Fitting tribute for Blunt

April 16, 2022 at 3:59 a.m.

We welcome a Missouri senator's plan to name Jefferson City's Missouri River bridge after retiring U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt.

Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden, R-Columbia, originally wanted to name the Rocheport bridge after Blunt because he secured federal funding for its reconstruction, Missouri News Network reported. But that bridge was already named after Marine Lance Cpl. Leon Deraps, who was killed in Iraq in 2006.

"Given all the work that he has done and brought to this state in the course of his 12 years in the United States Senate and time before that in Congress, this is a fitting way to memorialize his service to this great state," Rowden said.

We agree.

Blunt was a history teacher before being the first Republican to be elected as Missouri's secretary of state in more than 50 years. He also served four years as president of Southwest Baptist University. After being elected to the U.S. House seven times, he won a seat in the Senate in 2011.

In his tenure in Congress, he's served on powerful committees and used that influence to support conservative values. He's voted in favor of school prayer and school vouchers, supported the Second Amendment, opposed a minimum wage hike and earned a 97 percent rating from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Blunt represented his constituents well. But, at the same time, he's been able to work with the other side of the political aisle, something not common in today's politics. Many of his significant bills have been co-sponsored by Democrats. The Lugar Center of Georgetown University named him No. 11 in its bipartisan index for the 115th Congress in 2017.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch said Blunt "has one of the Senate's most conservative voting records, yet he generally avoids the confrontational, firebrand style."

As Blunt finishes his final term in Congress, we thank him for his service. And we urge state lawmakers to approve this measure to honor him by renaming Jefferson City's Missouri River bridge after him.

News Tribune

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