Reasons Why Tom Reed Isn’t Working For The 23rd District

To The Reader’s Forum:

Here’s one good reason why Tom Reed is not working for the 23rd District. This is not “political”; it’s a fundamental and essential economic issue that affects virtually everyone — those who receive or will receive earned benefits from Social Security and Medicare. Workers of all political persuasions pay into those programs and, in fact, are entitled to specific benefits.

My “reason” is that Tom Reed voted for House Joint Resolution 2 (H.J. Res. 2) also known as the federal balanced budget amendment to the Constitution. It does not matter that the resolution failed, what matters was the intent of H.J. Res. 2. Section 7 of the Resolution states, with my emphasis: “Total receipts shall include all receipts except those derived from borrowing. Total outlays shall include all outlays of the United States Government except for those for repayment of debt principle.” Thus, “all” includes both payments into and out of the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds; our money that is currently protected for our current and future use.

Having worked in those programs, I understand the intent of this amendment was two-fold: 1) allow Congress and the President to avoid repaying the billions of dollars already borrowed from money the programs owe us, and 2) to reduce, or potentially eliminate, current and future benefits. Congress and the President would slash those programs to make them “solvent” instead of making them better for us.

In other words, that amendment would have allowed Congress and the President to balance the federal budget by adversely altering our earned benefits. This would occur well after our temporary tax cuts expire and at a time when we’d need income support the most; when we’re no longer working.

Tom Reed’s action shows he really doesn’t care about us; he hopes we don’t understand that his vote was actually designed to hurt us. His hypocrisy is clear. He alleges wanting to preserve Social Security and Medicare, but acts to dismantle our basic income and health care support system; to literally hurt us.

All voters please wake up! Tom Reed wants to fundamentally make our and our children’s after-working life worse. He’s luring us with “nickel and dime” projects now, but it’s our financial and medical future that’s at stake. Don’t be fooled by distractions. Whether another amendment, or support for laws that have similar intent, Tom Reed does not have out best interests at heart.

Paul L. Demler

Jamestown

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