Liberal group dings Heck, Heller for spending vote

The liberal advocacy group Americans United for Change is targeting Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., and other Republicans in the House of Representatives for a spending vote that cut funding to transportation projects. 

Heck and Rep. Dean Heller, R-Nev., were among 235 Republicans who voted last weekend in favor of a continuing resolution to fund government departments, agencies and services that included $61 billion in cuts, including dozens of transportation and economic development projects.

In Southern Nevada the group cited funding for a $34 million grant to convert breakdown lanes on Sahara Avenue into bus lanes.

The seat held by Heck, a freshman who narrowly defeated Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., is likely to be considered a takeover target for Democrats in 2012. And Heller is considering a run for U.S. Senate.

Americans United executive director accused Heck and Heller of making cuts "at the expense of people who are just trying to get to work."

Heck responded by defending the vote, saying the money was put to better use by reducing debt.

"Our country’s staggering debt is a key contributor to the uncertainty and instability. Reclaiming unspent stimulus money is one way to drive down the debt and begin addressing our government’s spending problem," he said. "We need to foster job-creating economic stability first, then we can address traffic congestion."

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