Another Letter to my Congressman, Sam Graves
July 20, 2011
Dear Congressman Graves:
I’m disappointed to read about your enthusiastic endorsement of the oddly named ‘Cut, Cap, and Balance’ plan, especially given your record of support for fiscal irresponsibility when Republicans controlled the House of Representatives.
Not only have you voted against pay-as-you-go legislation twice, you voted to increase the debt limit four times when the Republicans were in power. The cumulative amount of increased debt that you supported was 3.02 trillion dollars. Under President Bush and the Republican-controlled Congress the debt limit increased by more than 9 trillion. These increases constituted the greatest debt increase in our history, more than Presidents Obama and Clinton combined. Most of these funds went directly to the richest corporations, and you have also opposed bills this year that would have closed those tax loopholes and tax breaks, despite the fact that corporate profits are at historic highs.
Your flip-flopping on the debt ceiling and fiscal responsibility rings hollow in light of these facts. Your endorsement of Paul Ryan’s proposed cuts to Social Security and Medicare, programs that are fully funded, appears to be little more than posturing for the 2012 campaign and a bid to reinvent yourself as a fiscal hawk on the backs of seniors and workers.
I urge you to withdraw your support for cutting peoples hard-earned benefits at time in history when rising oil and food prices are putting many people into situations where they have to decide which bills they can pay and which they can afford to carry over to next month. Your party argues that removing tax breaks and loopholes that benefit corporations is a tax increase. By the same logic, the rising food and gas prices that are driving your constituents into poverty are a tax increase as well, one that mustn’t be exacerbated by cuts to benefits they earned over a lifetime in the work force. Your constituents do not have 30 billion dollars in profit (as Exxon had in 2010) to keep them afloat through this recession.
I hope you will do the right thing and maintain Social Security and Medicare in their current form. Your constituents deserve nothing less.
Thank you for your time.