Wanna look good, lawmakers? Forget the mug; pass a budget

June 4, 2013 

Far too many state legislators are wasting time and taxpayer money, having their official photographs touched up to improve their looks.

Legislative photographers have been tasked with the assignment of smoothing away wrinkles, whitening teeth, erasing birthmarks and eliminating dark circles underneath eyes — some at the very specific request of lawmakers.

This despite the fact that the state Senate has a written digital photo policy that states: “The historical accuracy of a Senate photograph will not be changed or manipulated in any way.”

The House is silent on digital photo manipulation. Yet touchups occur, and some members say their official photos have been reworked without their consent.

It’s time for two things to happen. One, the Senate should follow its written policy and knock off the Photoshopping shenanigans.

Two, the House should adopt a policy to ensure the photos of its members are authentic — not doctored.

Here’s another problem: Some legislators are using photographs eight or 10 years old, clinging to their younger look like some aging movie star. How silly. How vain. It smacks of the deceptive practice used by some on Internet dating sites, posting old photos of themselves in a bid to look more attractive to their potential suitors.

If legislators really want to look good in the eyes of their constituents, they should stop messing with their official photographs, pass a budget and go home, wrinkles and all.

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