Rep. Tom Reed handed out four papers to those who attended his December 10 Town Hall Meetings. At the Barrington Town Hall Meeting he quickly went over the Congressional Priorities, spoke about the “Simple, Fair Tax Filing Postcard” and made quick references to the last two, the Circle Graph of the 2015 spending budget, and the chart comparing the congressional past, present, and predicted future Mandatory Spending budgets. He gave few details.
A click on a document will take you to a larger, printable, sharable pdf copy.
Rep. Reed’s priorities? They are the GOP conservative ideals written as shiny advertisements to entice voters to buy what they are selling: His catalog includes reforming the health care system (although it is never mentioned that there will be more out-of-pocket expenses.) and it reinforces they generation that poor people are lazy. His last priority sounds like a trade deal to me. Reed even threw a little Elizabeth Warren in there by saying he supports reducing college costs. Before you buy that, check out the GOP record on opposing PELL Grants and lowering college costs. We should pay attention to what Reed does, not listen to what he says.
What is missing from his priorities? Where does he stand on Immigration, the Military, money in government, civil rights, infrastructure and the environment? I’m not surprised that Green Energy, nor income equality made his priority list.
What are your priorities? He asks us to let him know our ideas and he listed his Washington phone number, ( (202) 225-3161.) Use it.
Next is the “Simple, Fair ‘Postcard’ Tax Filing” form. It is straight from the Paul Ryan playbook. It looks simple (14 lines) but who knows if it is fair. Forbes magazine looked at this form in June. commented on each line and called the form “misleading”.
- Line 1 is simple if you worked for one company, but not if you changed jobs during the year, or work part time for two or more employers.
- Line 2 would be simple unless you have investments from more than one source.
- Line 3 would be simple if you (and your spouse) have only 1 saving plan.
- Line 9 is not very simple for a divorced couple.
- Are Social Security benefits, IRAs and 401k’s, Unemployment comprehension all tax-free?
Give his office a call and have them explain it to you. (202) 225-3161.
Why did Rep. Reed include Social Security and Medicare in this budget? Aren’t they funded by salary deductions and the funds are placed in their own separate accounts? Give him a jingle at (202) 225-3161 and see how they explain it.
I question a chart when a message is overly simplified. What is Reed trying to say? Is Rep. Reed suggesting we should reduce spending on Mandatory items? I would think that mandatory items would be important items. What exactly are the mandatory items? What are Discretionary items? Call (202) 225-3161 to have his office staff explain this chart to you.
Rep. Reed passes these out at all Town Hall Meetings. If you plan to attend one of his meetings you may want to return to this page and prepare your questions/comments for these handouts.