I am a political activist. Always have been, always will be. I am allowed to have voice in governance, and I exercise it, sometimes to the chagrin of my friends and colleagues… but it is my right and I will not be silent.
In a day and age of rapid and easy communication, we have an opportunity without leaving our barcalounger to let our representative know our opinions of political issues we deem important in our lives; electronic petitions, e-mails, and cheap long distance telephone rates. Enough from Captain Obvious on that subject.
A really big concern I have right now is the Republican Party’s continue attack on “entitlements.” The requirement to cut Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid in order to balance the budget and/or raise the debt ceiling. Quite frankly, I do not understand how anyone can characterize what I pay for as an entitlement, unless you are saying, “You paid for it, now you are entitled to it.” Certainly Chevron is not entitled to subsidizes and the military is not entitled to a fleet of new jets, neither one paid for it. But I digress.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi has made it clear she will not stand for cuts in Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid. A letter in support of her position has been drafted by Representatives Raul Grijalva and Keith Ellison, Co-Chairs of the Congressional Progressive Caucus have drafted a letter which is to be forwarded to President Obama, urging in him in no uncertain terms, cuts to these programs will not be tolerated (the text is below).
Yesterday, I called the office of my representative, Susan Davis, and spoke with one of her staffers. I called her because she had not signed the letter. He advised me, Rep. Davis had previously stood by Rep. Pelosi on this issue, but had indicated she had not yet signed the letter. I urged him to tell her to sign it. If you feel strongly about your “entitlements,” you will too. Her number is 202-225-2040, I am sure she will be glad to hear from you.
To contact other representatives in the state of California see Contacting the Congress
We write in strong agreement with your unwavering defense of the Democratic programs that form the bedrock of America’s middle and working classes, and which are overwhelmingly popular.
On July 7, you made very clear that “We are not going to balance the budget on the backs of America’s seniors, women and people with disabilities” and that “we do not support cuts in benefits” for vital safety-net programs. We agree completely.
Especially in these tough economic times, we should not be cutting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid benefits that millions of our constituents paid into and depend on. Such benefit cuts should be off the table in current debt discussions.
Our Republican colleagues should be embarrassed by their insistence that unless Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits are cut, the nation will default on its debts. Middle-class families have sacrificed enough, and a deal that pushes the American Dream further out of reach, in order to pay for extending tax breaks for the rich and corporations, is simply unacceptable.
We are united as Democrats in saying that it’s time to stand up to the Republican hostage-taking. We will not be forced to vote for a “final agreement” that we do not agree to — and that the American people do not agree to.
We stand united with you in insisting that benefit cuts for working families, our seniors, children, and people with disabilities must be off the table, and we stand united with you in fighting for millions of Americans who need Democrats to be firmly on their side.
Raul Grijalva, Co-Chair
Congressional Progressive Caucus
Keith Ellison, Co-Chair
Congressional Progressive Caucus