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Reply #150: I just wrote this letter to Dick Durbin, who is my Senator [View All]

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Martin Eden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-23-11 09:05 AM
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150. I just wrote this letter to Dick Durbin, who is my Senator
Senator Durbin,

In reference to the current budget battle in Washington and to the prospect of cutting Social Security benefits, you recently stated "You have the House Republican budget from Congressman Paul Ryan, who I know and like, which is going to be placed somewhere on the right side of the spectrum. You have the president's suggestion, which will be on the other side of the spectrum. And if and when we reach an agreement, it will be in the middle, a bipartisan effort, which I think has a chance to succeed."

I believe such an agreement would not be a success -- it would be a capitulation and a failure to represent the interests of your constituents and of all Americans who are not among the wealthy few. The president's budget proposal is not on the far left of the spectrum; far from it. It is a very centrist position that in my opinion does not go nearly far enough in reversing the trickle-down economics that has been bringing our country down for the last 30 years.

The Republicans stake out a position on the extreme far right with a budget based on voodoo economics and destroys Medicare while giving even more tax cuts to the rich ... and you immediately suggest we should meet them halfway? Do you think there is a snowball's chance in hell of them so willingly and so quickly offering to compromise?

Every time we move in that direction towards "compromise" with the Republicans, the line is redrawn and the goal posts are moved further to the right. They know this, and I find it hard to believe that you don't know this too.

And now you're willing to put Social Security on the chopping block too. You are in effect putting the heads of American seniors on the chopping block. Social Security is a self-funding program that will be solvent indefinitely with an adjustment on the cap for contributions. The biggest reason it is in financial trouble is that this trust fund has been raided to pay for shortfalls elsewhere in government -- including deficits caused by tax breaks for the rich. If you agree to cut Social Security benefits as a measure to reduce the deficit, you will in effect have agreed to a massive redistribution of wealth from working class Americans to the rich.

What the American people need right now is real leadership from the Democratic Party -- not capitualation cloaked as compromise. We need leaders at every level of government who will fight for economic justice and for real solutions to budget deficits and the myriad other challenges we face as a nation.

I have been an Illinois resident all of my 53 years and have voted for you in every election. Please don't make me regret my vote.

Sincerely,
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