"No one is more fiscally conservative than Chris Shays," said New Hampshire GOP Congressman Charles Bass of the Granite State's Second Congressional District to a Boston newspaper reporter over the weekend.

Congressman Bass was talking about Connecticut Republican Christopher Shays. We wish he had also been voting with him on a significant matter last week.

Rep. Shays was one of 210 House members who tried to shut down the Army's School of the Americas at Fort Benning, Ga., by voting to remove its $4.3-million budget from an appropriations bill. The school was created in 1946 to increase the professionalism of Latin American and Caribbean military officials. Critics say many of its 60,000 graduates have become notorious for atrocities against civilians.

Given the demise of the Soviet Union and the near collapse of Castro's economy, we say it's time for Latin American countries to pay for the training of their own military officers in the post Cold War era. But unfortunately, 217 House members, including Bass, voted against shutting down the school.

We applaud Vermont's independent Congressman Bernard Sanders for voting for this sensible, cost-cutting measure.

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Copyright 1997

The Caledonian-Record

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