Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

December 3, 2012

Where has all this been for the past four years?

To Sen. Benjamin Cardin: The elections are now over (your words) and (Obama won, my words) “and it’s time for Congress — the House of Representatives and the Senate — to set political rhetoric aside and get back to the people’s business.

But before we can tackle the important legislative issues facing our na-tion, we must have a return to civility.”

Question: Mr. Cardin, where has the civility, cooperation and compromise been the past four years?

 In 2009 and 2010 the Democrats controlled both houses. Real cooperation took place when the onerous Obamacare bill was passed; I believe it was late at night, 2,400 pages long, no input from the Republicans, not many Democrats or Republicans even read the bill.

Nancy Pelosi said something like, “We have to pass the bill so that we can understand the bill.” great statesmanship on all who voted for the bill.”

 “It is also time to embrace a balanced approach to our budget deficit,” quoting you. How would the Senate know what a balanced budget is? They had the opportunity in the first two years of the Obama presidency to pass any budget they wanted.

However, the Senate hasn’t even proposed a budget in the last four years. The House has sent at least four budgets to the Senate for consideration; Mr. Reid immediately put them in his circular file.

 You talk about the “middle class” and being fair. If there is a middle class, then there must be a “lower class” and an “upper class,” which means we can only be fair to the “middle class;” implying that we will be unfair to the “lower class” and the “upper class.”

What constitutes the middle class? Those who make between $35,000 and $60,000 per year; the lower class would make less than $35,000, the upper class would make more than $60,000 to $65,000 and if the news stories are correct, most of the federal workers make more than $65,000 a year so they would be in the upper class.

Members of Congress make $174,000, so to which class do you belong?

How can you have a “budget reduction plan” if you have never passed a budget? It is reassuring that at least one Democrat recognizes that there is a budget deficit and that we need to do something about it now.

According to you, we need to set partisanship aside to invest (code word for spend) in programs that will kick our economy into high gear. Invest in clean energy; we did that the first Obama term, remember Solyndra?

The company that was going to develop a new solar panel; result over $500 million down the tubes when the Energy Department discovered that China was already supplying them at about half cost.

Let’s not forget the battery-powered vehicle from California. The final cost of the car was about $60,000 each, just the vehicle for the middle class, right!

 Your last paragraphs are interesting. Quoting; “I believe most elected officials appreciate the ‘power’  of the ballot box.”

There is one option that Congress will not put on the ballot for a vote, “term limits.” Do that, so that we can demonstrate the power and appreciation for the ballot box.

Now the president and congressional Democrats want compromise and cooperation to move us forward to tackle the serious issues we face, and to kick the economy down the road. Senator, this is not a football game.

The past four years the president did not move the ball down the field and it doesn’t appear, unfortunately, with no new players, that the next four years will be any different.

 Richard Beeghly

Cumberland

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