West Virginia Senator Robert Byrd died in 2010 as the longest serving U.S. senator of all time. While in office, Byrd predictably amassed enormous power such that he was able to shower West Virginia's citizenry with all manner of government largess.
Evidence of Byrd's generosity with the money of others is all over the state. There's the Robert C. Byrd Highway System, the Robert C. Byrd Bridge, the Robert C. Byrd Expressway, the Robert C. Byrd Federal Building, the Robert C. Byrd Health and Wellness Center, the Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing Systems, along with countless schools, service centers, rest stops on West Virginia highways, etc. Byrd delivered copious amounts of federal spending to the state, but did not deliver prosperity. West Virginia remains one of the U.S.'s poorest states, and is a monument to the flawed thinking popular among pundits, economists and politicians that says government spending boosts economic growth. No, it doesn't.