McCrery Needs A Jump

It's that time of year again, time for Rep. Jim McCrery (R-La.) to take his Ford Taurus SHO out for a wash. It's an annual ritual — and one that always involves jumper cables.

McCrery's aging auto is a fixture in the Rayburn garage, sitting for months in a reserved spot, accumulating dust and becoming the butt of jokes. One clever passer-by carved "Go Gators" on the window recently, a plug for a rival of McCrery's LSU Tigers.

This morning, McCrery and aide Brent Golleher were spotted trying to jump-start the car, which McCrery had bought new in 1989. "I like to take it out every year to clean it up," he said. The two had hooked up McCrery's new car, a Buick Ranier SUV, to the Taurus' dead battery and were trying periodically to start the engine as the battery charged. "Let's give it a few more minutes," McCrery said after one unsuccessful try at the ignition.

In the end, it never started. McCrery's going to replace the battery. This car is dear to him. When the lease runs out on his SUV in May, he says he'll go back to driving the Taurus. The SHO stands for Super High Output. "The interior looks great. It only has 68,000 miles. It looks good."