Thursday, July 28, 2011

I get mail from Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA)

Dave Reichert                                      Image via WikipediaI support nothing Dave Reichert does.  He voted against the Lilly Ledbetter fair pay act.  Rep. Reichert voted for the Paul Ryan budget, ending medicare as we know it.  Even the draconian Cut, Cap and Balance met his approval.  He voted to extend the Bush tax cuts.  I made hundreds of phone calls for his opponent in the last election - Suzan DelBene.  But, there is no doubt after reading this letter what he stands for. It's noteworthy that Rep. Reichert makes no references to the 14 million unemployed in his letter.  He makes no mention of two unpaid for wars, the unpaid for Bush tax cuts and the unpaid for medicare part D.  He also doesn't mention raising revenue.  80% of the American population believe that millionaires, billionaires and corporations should pay more taxes.  Rep. Reichert believes it would be irresponsible to raise the debt limit without spending cuts.  But he doesn't think its irresponsible to call into question the full faith and credit of the US government because he and a few other tea-addled conservatives think the government is spending too much money.  Reichert see nothing wrong with holding the nations economy hostage in order to foist his conservative agenda on the entire country.  When Reichert worked for the King County Sheriffs department he was a Commander-Hostage Negotiation.  Obviously he learned well how to make the hostage situation work for him. 
"I strongly believe the debt limit should not be raised without corresponding spending cuts. It would be irresponsible to allow the federal government to continue borrowing without insisting on reforms and cuts that can begin to reduce record deficits."
He is absolutely incorrect in all of his assumptions, and statements but they are there for you to see and judge. Compare this with the milk toast letter from my Senator, Maria Cantwell (D-WA). Perhaps if she had said:
I will allow no cuts to social security, medicare or medicaid at this time.  I will fight to see that tax loopholes for corporations and individuals are eliminated and the Bush Tax cuts for the millionaires and billionaires eliminated.   I will not allow  the poor, the elderly and the unrepresented middle class to suffer the consequences of an 8 year spending spree by the republicans followed by a financial collapse caused by unregulated greed on wall street.  I realize that 14-20 million Americans are unemployed and that is my number one priority
But, no she didn't say anything close to that.  If you have someone committed like Rep. Reichert and "a go along, la te da, get along" like Senator Cantwell who is going to do better in a negotiating room?  The middle class,the poor and all minorities are doomed. 

Dear Mr. Sarbiewski,
Thank you for contacting me to share your concerns about our nation's debt.  I appreciate hearing your views and welcome the opportunity to respond.
According to the U.S. Treasury Department, the federal government reached the statutory debt limit of $14.294 trillion, on May 16, 2011.  The Treasury Department used what Secretary Geithner called "extraordinary measures" to extend the government's borrowing authority through August 2, 2011.  Nearly all federal debt is subject to a statutory limit that cannot be raised without an act of Congress.  The Administration has said the debt limit would need to be increased by $2.4 trillion in order to take the government through November 2012 without defaulting on its obligations.  The President, Vice President, and House and Senate Leadership have met multiple times since May in an effort to reach agreement on legislation to raise the debt limit, but thus far a deal has not been reached and a specific plan has not been put forward by the Administration.   If an agreement is not reached and passed by Congress before the August 2nd deadline, the government will default on its obligations, and no longer be able to pay its bills on time because it will not have the borrowing authority or revenues necessary to cover all of its expenses.  These expenses include everything from Social Security payments, veterans benefits, pay for members of the military, Pell Grants for college students, interest payments on our debt, and other federal programs. 
To address this issue, various proposals have been put forward in both the U.S. House and Senate that range from a straight increase of the statutory debt limit, raising the debt limit with corresponding spending cuts, and raising the debt limit with a combination of spending cuts and tax hikes.  The U.S. House of Representatives considered and passed one such proposal, the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act (H.R. 2560), on July 19, 2011 by a vote of 234-190.  I supported this bill, which would permit the President to raise the debt ceiling by $2.4 trillion, only if corresponding spending cuts are enacted and a constitutional balanced budget amendment is adopted. The legislation proposes immediate reductions in federal outlays in Fiscal Year 2012 and would advance more fiscal restraint in the future by setting caps on government spending. The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration. 
I strongly believe the debt limit should not be raised without corresponding spending cuts.  It would be irresponsible to allow the federal government to continue borrowing without insisting on reforms and cuts that can begin to reduce record deficits.  Financial markets, military families, and Social Security beneficiaries need the assurance of a stable government on a sound fiscal footing to plan for the future.  That is why I have consistently supported a balanced budget amendment to ensure greater fiscal accountability within the federal government. 
It's time for Congress to set aside partisan bickering and work together to evaluate all responsible savings options and forge an agreement.  Reducing federal spending is a tough task, but all representatives share the responsibility to protect taxpayers, tighten Uncle Sam's belt, and put our nation on a sustainable fiscal path that will provide certainty to the markets and create an environment that stimulates job growth. Working together in this manner, we can and we will keep America great for generations to come.  America has been through tough times throughout our history.  We must succeed in restoring fiscal responsibility and economic prosperity for the sake of our children and for the sake of our great nation.
Once again, thank you for taking the time to get in touch with me. Your interest and input are valued and I will keep your views in mind as the debt limit debate continues to unfold.  I encourage you to visit my website and sign-up for my monthly e-newsletter at to learn more about other issues impacting the 8th Congressional District and our nation.  You can also follow my work online and receive frequent updates on legislation being considered in Congress by visiting me on Twitter ( and Facebook ( 


David G. Reichert
Member of Congress
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