Rep. Reed Ignores John Plumb’s Military Service

Rep. Tom Reed has created an attack ad against his only announced opponent, John Plumb who grew up in Randolph (Cattaraugus  County), and has posted it on the Internet. Reed’s early political ads have historically been aimed to negatively define his opponent with Reed’s personal  political spin. This one is fits the bill.

Does Reed attack Plumb on his issues? Of course not.

This ad, called “John Plumb–Home” contains still-pictures with simple animation. It states: “Democrat John Plum is running for Congress, and New Yorkers are wondering where he’s been.” It goes on to show two locations outside new York State where Plumb lived after he graduated from high school, mixed with questionable “facts” about Plumb’s political actions.  The ad is critical of residents born in our congressional district and were raised with our values, who leaves to get an education and then serves our country in the military.

The ad contains the following claims:

  • In Washington Plumb was a “Top Advisor to Barack Obama”.

Reed is trying to cast Plumb  as a liberal and to shore up his Internet Friends. I guess Rep. Reed doesn’t understand that true Patriots understand that it is an honor to be asked to serve the President and that when the President asks you to serve, you serve.

  • “In Colorado Plumb worked for a Liberal Senator and sent money to Obama’s campaign”.

Notice that Reed didn’t name the “Liberal” Senator that John Plumb worked for. Reed was  referring to Colorado Senator Ken Salazar, who asked Plumb to work for him in the Senate as his Military Legislative Advisor. Again, Reed is painting a Plumb as a Liberal, but Senator Salazar was far from being Liberal, and Reed knows it.  Sen. Salazar  said, “Too often in Washington special interests urge us to fight one another just because we belong to different parties. It is time for this to stop and for Washington to focus on what needs to be done.” Maybe Plumb remembered Salazar’s quote when he said in September,  “If I felt the area was being represented well, I don’t care if someone’s a Republican or a Democrat, I would not be part of this race. But I think this district should do better, and I think I can offer a viable alternative and show some actual leadership.”

  • In  New York John Plumb had Nancy Pelosi Campaign Team to introduce him to reporters.

What is he talking about? Does Nancy Pelosi have a Campaign Team stationed in New York rubbing elbows with the Press? Of course not. Reed is again trying to paint Plumb as an evil Liberal. 

  • Extreme Ithaca Liberals donated to his campaign funds.

Reed got out the Liberal paint brush again. Doesn’t he realize that Ithaca is in our district? Do you think he took time to figure out which of Plumb’s donors are “Extreme Liberal”? Oh, by the way, Reed also received donations from residents of Ithaca.

What should scare the constituents of the our Congressional District is that 63% of Reed’s donations for the 2016 campaign have come from  Political Action Committees (PACs), and 37% from Individuals. The Federal Elections Commission reports that 16% of John Plumb’s donations came from PACs, and 84% came from individuals.

What Rep. Reed didn’t tell us in the Attack Ad:

  • Reed neglected to add that John Plumb also lived in South Bend, Indiana when he attended the University of Notre Dame on a U.S. Navy ROTC scholarship.
  • Plumb lived in Colorado when he earned his Master of Science in Physics Degree from the University of Colorado (1993).
  • After Plumb received his Master’s Degree, he joined the Navy as a Commissioned Officer, and was on active duty for more than 6 years. He spent close to three ofthose years  on the fast attack submarine USS San Juan. Plumb spend 28 straight days under the ice in the Arctic, and received the Arctic Service Ribbon.
  • Plumb left Active Duty, but continues his service in the Navy Reserves where he currently serves as commanding officer for the Maritime Operations Center reserve detachment in Newport, RI.
  • He lived again in Colorado in 2003 when he earned his Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering.
  • Plumb also served the country  by working in the Senate (for Sen. Salazar), the Pentagon, and the White House. He took a one-year break to deploy to Kuwait, supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
  • Plumb qualifies as an expert on pistol and sharpshooter on rifle. 
  • Plumb has been recognized for his public service from three different departments during his time in Washington having been awarded the:
    • the Office of the Secretary of Defense Exceptional Public Service Award 
    • the Department of State Superior Honor Award
    • the Secretary of Energy Achievement Award  

Rep. Reed claims to support Veterans:

“Today we honor the servicemen and women who have protected our freedom and defended our nation. We thank them for their service, dedication, and commitment to ensure that we may enjoy our everyday lives in a free country.” Rep. Tom Reed’s Veterans Day Newsletter, November 2015

How can we believe what Rep. Reed says about Veterans when he dismisses John Plumb’s honorable service to our country? Instead of disregarding Plumb’s service, Reed should be explaining to us how we have benefited from the bills and programs passed by the Congress.




Posted in 2016, Congress, Constituents, Defense, Reed's Views, Veterans | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Rep. Reed’s Conflicting Syrian Refugee Comments

An audience member at Rep. Reed’s Saturday, November 14  Town Hall Meeting in Phelps presented him with the following (inaccurate) information: “The President went on record saying he wants to bring in 200,000 Syrian refugees. There was a diplomatic passport found on the body of a (Paris) terrorist.” The he asked Rep. Reed, “What say you about bringing in Syrian immigrants?”

I was pleasantly surprised at the way Rep. Reed responded:

“We can not let this radical extreme behavior change what made us great as a country. By that what I mean is what made us great as a country is our diversity, our rich immigration history, our willingness to bring people, allow people to come to America, as long as you follow the rules, and we have a secure way to have that done. So I’m not going to say one population we’re going to close all the  bordersto you and to and another population you have a presumptive pass and you can come on through without any security checks. What we need is to have a secure border system, and that should be the goal, not, some people now have knee jerk, and I get it that France and has temporarily closed all the borders…

…If the long term policy is that we’re going to close the borders and some how we’re going to build walls that somehow keeps us away from the rest of the world. It is just not realistic. It is not a solution that I think is good for us as a country long term. What made us great as a country is our willingness to be that leader and the ability to say we can keep ourselves safe—we’ll make that commitment but you can come so long as you go through the process.  

I was stunned with his answer. I did not expect that Rep. Reed would celebrate the diversity of our society, and praise our willingness to bring people to our nation. Then, less than 72 hours later, we read something quite different when he issued his  Press Release, “Reed Statement on Syrian Refugees”:

“I care about keeping Americans safe by keeping ISIS out of our country. It’s only right that we prioritize America’s security and thwart any potential act of terrorism on our soil. In light of the recent terror attacks in Paris, we need to stop the Syrian refugee program until the security measures are in place to guarantee our safety. We are a compassionate country and have demonstrated our humanitarian commitment with the billions of dollars we have provided in foreign aid to deal with situations just like this. However, we are extremely reluctant to allow this initiative to continue or expand until, at minimum, the Administration can actually demonstrate ways to keep us safe in the process.

On Thursday, November 19, Rep. Reed voted to approve H.R. 4038, The American SAFE Act, which would effectively shut down the U.S. Syrian refugee resettlement program. Presently refugee screening takes  18  months to three years and includes reference checks, finger printing, background checks, health tests, biographic checks, and  consultations with nine different governmental agencies. HR 4038 adds more requirements to the vetting process.  If the Bill passes the Senate, and both chambers override the President’s veto, the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Director of National Intelligence will need to independently certify that a proposed immigrant from Syria or Iraq is not a threat to our security.  Since the Civil War began four year ago, fewer than 2,200 Syrians have been admitted to the United States.

Political Flip FlopsWhat hapnened between Saturday and Tuesday that caused Rep. Reed to change his mind on blocking the Syrians refugees from resettling in the United States? First he praised America for our “willingness to bring people to America as long as you follow the rules” and then voted to changes the rules, making immigration virtually impossible.

The dozen or so people left the Town Hall Meeting thinking that our congressman was sincere. Now we know it was political theater.

How can we believe what Rep. Reed tells us?



Posted in Congress, Constituents, Immigration, Reed's Views, Town Hall Meeting | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Rep. Reed’s comments on Income Tax Reform

Income Tax Reform was a topic of discussion at Rep. Reed’s Town Hall Meeting in Phelps (Ontario County) on Saturday, November 14.

One of the members of the audience of a dozen was an area doctor, who I have seen before at TaxReformReed’s Town Hall Meetings, who strongly supports the  “Fair Tax” concept. He requested Rep. Reed to update the group on the congressional activity dealing with reforming the Income Tax Code.

Reed explained that the present Tax Code is “broken…antiquated” and needs a whole rewrite. He feels that the House, Senate and White House need to be committed to reforming it but doesn’t expect to see that the White House being committed until after the Presidential Election. He assured us that the House’s Ways and Means Committee, which he is a member, has been having  “sincere” debates on Income Tax Reform. They have created three guiding principles—to simplify the code, make it fair, and make it competitive.

Reed gave an example of simplifying the code. Our present code has “116 provisions” that need to be renewed every 12 or 24 months. That doesn’t make sense to him. He wants  those “provisions” to be made permanent. He didn’t go into detail on any of these provisions, nor explain why they need to be renewed.

Having the Income Tax more competitive means making sure the U.S.A  can compete with the other counties in keeping our corporations located here. Reed pointed out that we have the largest corporate tax rate in the world and –surprise–he wants to reduce it.

The closest reference he made to “make it fair” was a reference to Rep. Dave Camp’s proposed revenue neutral—distribution neutral tax code. It would not raise taxes and it keeps the tax burden at the same level. Forbes reported  that the independent Taxation and Policy Center reviewed Camp’s plan and said, “its long-run effects on revenues are “highly uncertain.”

When Rep. Reed asked the audience, “What do you think we should do?” a member quickly said “Abolish the IRS completely”. Reed responded, “The reality is that you are still going to need an agency to collect it and monitor it.” He explained that monitoring the taxes means seeing that it is going to be correctly assessed and that people are paying their correct taxes.

He responded to the Fair Tax advocate by saying that the Fair Tax debate centers around the fact that is is a very regressive tax; the lower income earners pay a higher percentage of their salary than medium to high income earners. Responding to that claim, Fair Tax supporters have suggested to provide rebate checks to certain income levels. Reed questions who will determine which income levels should receive the rebates and, who will define what is meant by income. Is it the W-2 amount, does it include investments and/or retirement savings? Reed was respectful to the Abolish IRS and Fair Tax supporters, but the sense is that he really doesn’t support either.

Rep. Reed, in his recent Official Survey, asked his constituents, “Do you support passing a long-term tax bill if it will lower taxes while also eliminating or reducing deductions.” (Yes, No, or Unsure). Any Income Tax reform will be around for a long time; if it is going to be simple, fair and competitive it needs to be bipartisan, and thought out completely. The public deserves to understand the details before committing to definite answer to this question.

Posted in Congress, Constituents, Data, Economics, Reed's Views | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Looking to 2016 what Steuben County taught us on this Election Day

The following article was written by our good friend, Anonymously. I can tell you that Mr. or Ms Anonymously is a resident of the NY 23rd and is not an elected figure and has never been a candidate. If others are interested in writing article for the New NY23rd, and published anonymously, just contact us. We need o hear your voice in the discussion of the issues of district.

Election day 2015 showed us several interesting trends with the Democratic Party in tballot-box-2he Southern Tier. For the first time in 100 years Democrats in Cayuga County took the County Legislature. A democratic incumbent was defeated handedly for Reelection in Elmira Mayor. Meanwhile a former democratic congressional candidate in Ithaca was defeated in his reelection campaign for County legislature. In horseheads a labor friendly incumbent Republican mayor was defeated by a twin tiers party leader and his band of merry zealots. But what was most interesting was how elections turned out in Steuben County as a whole.

On the ballot were countless Town Supervisor, Town Justice, and other local positions plus two seats on the county legislature. Incumbent Democrat George Welch Jr. resigned his seat representing Corning in the County legislature for a judgeship. Similarly in Hornell a seat opened up. Well guess what happened. Democrats contested and Democrats won both seats. In addition Democrats won Town Supervisor and Town justice positions in the towns of Hornby, Addison, Caton, and even in Jasper Democrats still hold local offices. Democrats captured one county legislature seat, and successfully defended the other from the challenge of Congressman Tom Reed’s chief of Staff Joe Sempolinski.

This outright denies a successor to Tom Reed, as Demographics change, and Tom feels the need to retire, or run for higher office. Some have touted him as a Lieutenant Governor candidate for 2018.

While these victories seem small, they matter for three reasons. First because small election victories like these help strengthen the Democratic Brand for Presidential year elections. Believe it or not, our friends and neighbors who are Republican will cross partylines to vote for friends and those they deem honest. Honesty comes in many forms but in politics in comes in giving a sincere pitch and honest depiction of what is happening in the town. This pitch is then amplified by the candidate telling voters what they’ll do to better the locality. Democrats made a better pitch and thanks to this we won. The second reason these victories matter is the sole fact that this just adds more to the Democratic bench for higher offices. For the last three presidential election cycles, Democrats in Steuben County have been able to trend bluer. This holds true across the 23rd Congressional district, with President Obama outright winning, Tompkins, Seneca and losing Yates, Chemung, and Schuyler by a margin of 3% or less.  These trends seem to keep continuing despite what has happened in the past.

With a Republican delegation from Congress all the way to State Assembly in some parts of our district, these victories in local office show that changing trend of the Southern Tier trending blue. Even now these local victories show cracks in the Republican machine in the Southern tier. The truth is we are represented by Gaffe prone political gadflys who rely on low level voter turnout to secure victory. Only in the Southern Tier can a state senator curse out one of his constituents. Only in the Southern Tier can a County Executive tell the New York Times that refurbishing the County Government Office is “economic development”.  The truth is none of our Republican “reform” minded state senators ever called for the resignation of Dean Skelos from the leadership of the State Senate. Hell one of our Assemblymen even tried to cut a deal for his vote to a Democrat in the state assembly Speaker’s race and the Democrat passed on the offer.

The truth is we sit among some of the most powerless elected officials in the state. There is no political will to move forward to bring economic development to the Southern Tier. After all these are our elected officials, why is that they blame someone else when factories shut down or economic development does not reach the Southern Tier. These elected officials aren’t elected to make $80,000 and go to Albany for Photo Ops. They are payed to legislate and advocate for our region. Sometimes economic development isn’t ideological and that may be why they fail to bring back any of our young people or bring jobs to our area.

While the latest factory closure in Campbell has State Senator O’mara, Assemblyman Palmesano, and Congressman Reed juggling issues to find an excuse as to why they didn’t do anything, it just goes to show how unqualified and lacking political will a lot of these guys are. The fact that Senator Schumer intervened before Congressman Reed shows where Reed’s priorities are. Truth be told this factory closure is what years of Republican Representation in Albany and D.C looks like.

Democracy is often mistaken to be a big ordeal that happens once or twice every two years. But the truth is Democracy happens every single day, and in our rural communities Democracy happens with our neighbors, because ultimately the people who vote aren’t some sort of number coming out of a board of elections website. They are our neighbors and friends, which is why we need more people running for local office. We need to run tickets up and down the ballot, and show our communities we exist. The truth is we are the silent majority, and the Southern Tier is dying, we don’t need elected officials at any level who just want participation medals in government. No community deserves that, and in Steuben County Democrats made that argument and they won. This is the argument we need to make in 2016.

Posted in 2016, Congress, Economics, Environmental, NYS Government | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Why not Mitt?


Slow and steady wins the race. — Aesop

In spite of his perhaps ill-advised turn to the right, Mitt Romney didn’t do badly in 2012. Republicans seeking a viable candidate might do well to give him another chance:

  • Mitt is at least as well qualified as any of his rivals.
  • Mitt has been carefully vetted; any weaknesses are well known and long ago discounted. Surprises are unlikely.
  • Since Mitt would have little hope of winning the hearts of the far right, he wouldn’t need to seek their support. They would see no alternative but to stay home in any case.
  • Compared to many of his rivals, Mitt would be seen as a moderate.
  • Mitt has campaign experience, he might know better how to avoid mistakes this time.
  • Mitt has a proven ability to raise money.
  • Unlike some of his rivals, Mitt was born and raised a Republican. Republican party leaders should like that.

Political parties are sometimes unwilling to give a loosing candidate a second chance. Richard Nixon is one who succeeded on his second try; it could happen again.

Jeb Bush famously observed that a Republican might have to lose in the primaries to win the election. If Mitt were chosen by a deadlocked convention, he would go into the general election unscathed by nasty primary battles.

Posted in 2016, Political, President | Tagged | 5 Comments

Rep. Reed’s Survey Questions Analyzed

I recently received the 2015 Official U.S. Government Survey from Rep. Reed’s office.  We question-mark-manwere told that “your responses are necessary to help guide federal policy.”

These issues are complex; many questions give simplified descriptions that do not inform the reader of both sides of the issue. Many of the questions are vague. Many are loaded with biases.  Some questions have limited choices for people to accurately state their opinion; sometimes Yes, No, or Unsure isn’t enough.  Does he really want our opinions? Or, does he want the data from this survey to justify what he is doing in Washington?

The comments after the questions include my opinions and/or some background about the issue.

#1. Do you approve or disapprove of Congressman Tom Reed’s work as your Representative?

[ ]Approve        [ ] Disapprove      [ ] Unsure

No tricks here, the question is clear and to the point.

2. In general, should the federal government be more involved or less involved in the daily lives of Americans?

[ ] More Involved        [ ] Less Involved      [ ] Unsure

He is promoting the GOP “Big Government” talking point. The terms “More Involved” and “Less Involved” are vague. What is he really asking?

3. Do you believe the border must be secured before further action is taken to reform our immigration policy?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

How is he going to interpret the answers to this question? Does securing the border mean building Trump’s Wall? Is he asking us if we think a wall should be built before an immigration policy has gone through the legislative process? What’s wrong with having a policy intact before spending money on a Wall? Remember the Senate has already passed an immigration policy and it has not been brought to the House floor. Speaker of the House Ryan is refusing to work on immigration reform with President Obama.

4. Do you believe the President’s proposed trans-pacific partnership trade agreement will be good for upstate New York?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

A basic, good question. I just wonder what people know about the TPP? In the recent Fox Business News debate Donald Trump stated that he does not support the TPP because it benefits China (or so he said). In reality one of the points of TPP is to weaken China’s role in global economics.

5. This year Congressman Reed introduced the Defense of Property Rights Act to provide owners with an opportunity to seek compensation in Federal court when government action significantly impairs the value of their land. Do you believe that the actions of the federal government are negatively impacting private property?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

Nobody likes being told “No”. This questions couples the fear of the size of our government with the fear of regulations. Our government has the responsibility to protect our land and resources. (For some reason Rep. Reed gave a lot of detail in this question–I wonder why.)

#6. Do you believe abled-bodied adults with no dependents should have to work or perform community service before receiving federal welfare assistance?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

Last year Rep. Reed was pushing for requiring “abled-bodied adults with no dependents” to work (or perform community service).  The only problem with his thinking is that those who are abled to work are already required to work. See New NY23rd’s article on this topic. Reed is promoting class warfare, again. This time he pitting one group of Americans (welfare) against the rest of us. Earlier this year he pitted retirees vs the disabled when he attacked the Social Security Disability fund.

#7. Do you think the current entitlement system (Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid) as unsustainable, fine as is, or are you unsure?

[ ] Unsustainable       [ ] Fine-As-Is      [ ] Unsure

Another question with vague choices. What if you feel that they are sustainable; the income sources need to be expanded? You could not express your opinion through any given choices.

#8. Do you agree with the Supreme Court’s recent decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare) in King v. Burwell?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

What does it matter? How is this question going to  help guide federal policy? Is he suggesting that we can change the Supreme Court’s decision? How many of us can describe what King v Burwell was about without using google?

#9. Should Congress repeal, reform, or replace Obamacare as it is now?

[ ] Repeal       [ ] Reform   [ ] Replace   [ ] Unsure

Yes, Rep. Reed is giving us only the options are to repeal Obamacare, reform Obamacare, or replace Obamacare, or to tell him that we are unsure what to do. How can those who do not want to repeal, reform, or replace Obamacare indicate that on this questionnaire? Besides not giving the thousands of his constituents who are benefiting from Obamacare a chance to voice their opinion, this question is very poorly written. How can you replace Obamacare if you don’t first repeal it? This question alone indicates that this survey isn’t really asking for our opinion.

#10. Do you believe China’s currency manipulation negatively affects American jobs?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

Maybe Rep. Reed could explain what this means?

#11. Do you support the President’s nuclear deal with Iran that lifts U.S. economic sanctions in exchange for compliance with some restrictions on its nuclear program?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

What Rep. Reed calls “some restrictions” are twenty-two restrictions, 17 of them to last a decade or more, and deal includes inspections. For a list of the restrictions follow this link. This deal has already been approved. How would knowing the feelings of the NY23rd’s residents help guide federal policy? Why is he bringing up a dead issue? Probably to get his base riled.

#12. Do you believe the United States should be willing to use force to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

That information would be good to know so that Congress can plan to fortify the military for 2030.

#13. Would you support efforts for immigration reform which would curb illegal immigration while creating a pathway for illegal immigrants obtaining legal status?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

One of the best written questions in the survey. I believe the answers could be used to guide federal policy.

#14. Should primary and secondary education fall under local control or should it be controlled by the federal government?

[ ] Responsibility of the states and localities

[ ] Responsibility of the federal government

[ ] Unsure

I am guessing he wants to remind us of Common Core, but he is not saying that. Our schools are following New York State’s Department of Education policy when it comes to teaching procedures, not the federal government’s.

#15. Do you think the county is on the right track or heading in the wrong direction?

[ ] Right track        [ ] Wrong track      [ ] Unsure

Another question with vague choices.

How would Rep. Reed interpret a ‘Right Track” response? How would he interpret a Wrong Track response? Those who feel that the government is going to the right too much should chose the Wrong track option. Those who feel that the government is going to the left too much should also chose the Wrong track option. Those who pick Right track are those who are pleased with the advances (economical, social, or foreign policy) the Executive Branch has been able to establish.

#16 Do you support the 2nd Amendment?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

Who doesn’t support the 2nd Amendment?

Will Rep. Reed use the data from this question to justify being against common sense laws that reduces gun violence? The Federal Court of Appeals have used the Supreme Court’s opinions regarding the 2nd Amendment to uphold states’ legislation that was written to reduce gun violence, including background checks and banning public ownership of military weapons. If you support those decisions then you support the second amendment, even though Rep. Reed dismisses those decisions.

#17.  Should the federal government be able to spy on Americans without first obtaining a legal warrant from a judge, as required by the 4th Amendment of the Constitution?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

The only complaint I have with this questions is the hot button term “spy”. To make this question Balanced it should be stated that the information gathering was to protect us from terrorists. Does a NO vote show support of the actions of Edward Snowden. Does a No vote a vote against the PATRIOT ACT?

#18. The federal government is projected to run a $500 billion deficit in 2015. In order to bring our federal budget into balance, which of the following are you most likely to support? 

[ ] Reforming welfare programs

 [ ] Reforming Medicare and Medicaid

 [ ] Cutting Defense Spending

[ ] Eliminating bureaucratic positions within the federal budget

 [ ]Keeping federal spending and increasing taxes

 [ ] Reforming Social Security

The problems with this question are (1) some might not be sure how many items they can chose (I am assuming one) (2) Are we suppose to assume we can balance the budget by changing only one of the listed items? (It has been pointed out that Social Security does not affect the deficit).

#19. Do you support the use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to drive down energy cost and promote American energy independence, provided it is done safely?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

The question has debatable claims (1) drive down energy costs (2) promote American energy independence and (3) that it can be done safely. The most questionable claim is “provided it is done safely?”.  Although the Gas Industry can honestly claim their procedures are safe, there are too many people who have the opportunity to disobey the regulations to make an easy  buck, and the safe procedure becomes a disaster. A fair question would be  Do you support the use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking)? and forget the GOP talking points.

#20. Do you support passing a long-term tax bill if it will lower taxes while also eliminating or reducing deductions. 

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

These terms are too general. The devil is in the details. The key is which deductions (loop-holes) the Ways and Means Committee will eliminate or reduce. I would hope the majority response is “Unsure”. Don’t give Rep. Reed the ammo to justify ending deductions that will unfairly harm the middle and lower class population.

#21. Do you believe Congress should can do more to promote American manufacturing and better paying jobs?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

Realistically, who can say  “No” to this question?

#22. Do you believe Congress should have more control over the number and type of regulations promulgates by the federal government?

[ ] Yes        [ ] No      [ ] Unsure

This question is part of the GOP talking point program that is getting some to feel that the President has too much power and that the government is too large. Congress already has control over regulations.

Federal Agencies are in the Executive Branch of our government. (Click here for a list of the agencies). Congress created each agency, and authorized them to issues regulations. It can also can hold hearings, issue reports and adopt new legislation. Congress can also review and reject new regulations. For more detailed information: go to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.

Questions 23-29 asks questions about interaction with Rep. Reed’s Office, if you think  questionnaires are good ways to communicate, and information about you (gender, race, age group, and how you get your news).

The final question: “What one issue or policy do you associate with Tom Reed?”

I am inviting you to answer that question in the comment space below, or on our Facebook page.  (Along with any other comments.) Rep. Reed added, “For questions and concerns, please call (202)225-3161 (his Washington office).

Posted in Congress, Constituents, Constitution, Data, Defense, Economics, Education, Environmental, fracking, Gun Violence, Health Care, Hydrofracking/Gas& Oil Industry, Immigration, Racism, Reed's Views, Rights, Social Security, Supreme Court, Treaties | Tagged , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Government integrity by State


Government integrity

An investigation of integrity of State governments found only three states (Alaska, California, Connecticut) with grades higher than D+; eleven States (22%) flunked. Here is the naughty list:

  1. Maine
  2. Michigan
  3. South Dakota
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Louisiana
  6. Nevada
  7. Oregon
  8. Wyoming
  9. Pennsylvania
  10. Delaware
  11. Kansas

Fourteen States (28%) have term limits for legislators.

  1. Florida
  2. Maine
  3. Michigan
  4. Colorado
  5. Ohio
  6. South Dakota
  7. Montana
  8. Arizona
  9. Mississippi
  10. Oklahoma
  11. Louisiana
  12. Nebraska
  13. Nevada
  14. Oregon

Of the fourteen States with term limits, six (Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Dakota) flunked the integrity test. Thus more than forty percent of States with term limits flunked while twenty-two percent of all states flunked.

Correlation doesn’t imply causality–we can’t conclude that corruption leads to term limits or that term limits cause corruption, but there are reasons to expect term limits to encourage corruption:

  1. Term limited legislators needn’t worry about reelection, they are free of that restraint.
  2. Term limited legislators have limited time to sell their office, they must hurry.
  3. Term limited legislators take a short term view, in a short time they will be out.

In spite of a reputation for corruption, NYS was not among the States which flunked. Some NYS offices, not the legislature, had good records.

Posted in Congress, NYS Government, Political | Tagged , | Leave a comment