Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz takes a tour of the liberal side

Baltimore » Rep. Elijiah Cummings gets a laugh when he points out that Utah has a problem with wild horses.

That’s not something fathomable for the folks in inner-city Baltimore where the more pressing concerns are crime, unemployment and poverty. On the flip side, people in Provo don’t suffer from food deserts, or areas where grocery stores, and healthy food, are lacking.

"I bet you’ve never heard of a food desert," Cummings says to Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who shakes his head no.

Baltimore and Provo are almost polar opposites, politically, racially, economically — and yet they are represented in Congress by two men likely to be the top leaders on a powerful House committee next year. Cummings, a black Democrat, speaks with the gusto of a pastor; Chaffetz, a white Republican, tosses red meat when he talks.

The Utahn is possibly the next chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in the next Congress; Cummings is likely to remain the ranking Democrat.


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