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Post: U.S. Reps. Canseco, Flores embrace D.C. ‘culture of big-money fundraisers’Post: U.S. Reps. Canseco, Flores embrace D.C. ‘culture of big-money fundraisers’ | The Washington Independent

Well that didn’t take long: A pair of new Texas GOP congressman who rode the tea party wave into office have, as The Washington Post describes it, “rapidly embraced the capital’s culture of big-money fundraisers.”

New U.S. Rep.-elects Francisco “Quico” Canseco (R-San Antonio) and Bill Flores (R-Bryan) together took in more than $130,000 in PAC money from Oct. 14-Nov. 22, according to Federal Elections Commission reports released last week. Nearly $50,000 of the PAC money came in after Election Day.

Though the Post labels Canseco a “tea party favorite,” the San Antonio Tea Party largely stayed out of Canseco’s campaign against U.S. Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-San Antonio), as the Texas Independent previously reported.

After completing an extensive questionnaire on his beliefs, Canseco dropped out of the vetting process for endorsement by the Texas branch of Independence Caucus, a national conservative group sharing many of the tea party’s limited government ideals, the Texas Independent also has reported.

Though he’s not included in the Post article, Texas’ third new U.S. Rep.-elect R. Blake Farnethold (R-Corpus Christi) accepted more than $26,000 in PAC contributions from Oct. 14-Nov. 22, with about $5,500 coming after Election Day.

Before the latest round of FEC filings, Farenthold had reported accepting a total of $1,000 in PAC money during his campaign. Canseco (who took about $79,000 in PAC money during the last filing period) had accepted about $110,000 in PAC money previously. Flores (who took about $58,000 in PAC money during the last filing period) had taken about $160,000 in PAC money previously.

Canseco’s newest contributors include the PACs for Altria Group (the parent of Philip Morris tobacco company), Associated Builders & Contractors, Capital One Financial Corporation, ConocoSpiritPhillips, General Electric, Humana, KPMG, Goldman Sachs and Valero.

Flores’ newest contributors include the PACs for Altria Group, BNSF Railway, Capital One, Comerica, Deloitte, Exxon Mobil, Fulbright & Jaworski, KPMG and National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. Flores is a retired businessman in the energy industry.

Farenthold’s newest contributors include the PACs for Altria Group, Associated Builders & Contractors, National Association of Health Underwriters and WellMed Medical Management.

According to a Beltway-based political consultant interviewed by the Post, the PAC contributions are not at odd with GOP freshmen’s anti-Washington message: “These guys ran against Washington, but they ran against the bad parts of Washington–the bloated bureaucracy and Nancy Pelosi’s agenda,” said Andrew Theodore. “That’s not a contradiction to take money from a trade group or corporation that represents free-enterprise principles.”

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