October 31, 2008
I have to say, as a long-time resident of Aurora, we are not used to receiving this much political attention. I am delighted that people are starting to recognize the importance of our community in reaching out on national campaigns.
Former Presidential Candidate John Kerry made a stop at Rangeview High School in 2004 which was unusual for our community but he was born in Aurora.
Since then Barack Obama visited Aurora in 2006 to support Ed Perlmutter. Of course our current Governor, Bill Ritter, Jr. grew up in Aurora
Now that Obama is a presidential candidate, we have also seen Sen. Hillary Clinton (NY), Gov. Bill Richardson (NM) and Actor Robert Redford join us in Aurora. John McCain was also in Aurora earlier this year.
We are a growing community that should not be ignored by anyone. This community has demonstrated that it is willing to put policy over party and neither Democrats nor Republicans should assume that any part of Aurora will always go "their" way.
Our citizens are independent and will go their own way depending on the issues and candidates at the time.
In the meantime, congratulations to our community for flexing your political muscle and for exercising your right to vote! We will have another historic figure, Gloria Steinam at the Community College of Aurora tomorrow Sat. Nov. 1 at 3:00 PM.
Early voting finishes today (Oct. 31). If you have a ballot out, return it as soon as possible! If you haven't returned your mail ballot by today (Fri. Oct. 31), the post office is recommending you drop it off in person to make sure it is received by election day.
October 03, 2008
Here's a few things in the bailout bill which you might not have heard about:
- renewable energy credits
- tax credits & policy on carbon, coal, conservation, renewable diesel, ethanol, biomass, solar & wind policy
- tax credit for the steel industry
- mental health parity
- abandoned mines
- hurricane Ike disaster relief
- tuition issues
- permanent authority for undercover operations
- film & TV production
- deduction for school teachers
- issues on American Samoa & Puerto Rico
- mine rescue
- Indian Reservations
- wool research fund
- terrorism issues
- child tax credit
- wooden arrows exemption
Congress does not have the ability to "line-item" their thoughts on each separate provision but must decide in total "yes" or "no".
I support some of the policies in here (i.e. mental health parity and for renewable energy tax credits), but what I really oppose is a lawmaking process that glues so many otherwise unrelated ideas together into one, unseverable bill.
This is in addition to the fact that I think it is not fundamentally sound public policy to go $700 billion further in debt so taxpayers can buy the bad debt of a few reckless corporations.
I am GLAD the house initially voted the measure down. Our grand-children will be paying off the bad debt of these corporations who fell prey to their own excesses. And even if I thought it was appropriate for grandchildren to be paying for this generation's expenses and mistakes, I certainly wouldn't spend it for this purpose.
But the so-called "improved" version is not improved it simply leverages various people's wish-lists to try to secure enough votes for passage. What it actually does is make a compelling case for the need for single subject reform at the federal level. Colorado voters wisely passed single subject reform in Colorado in 1994. As a result, we can not and do not have the ability for "riders" or "pork barrel projects" or "vote trading" within a given measure. This is a good thing.
I hope that Congress does not succumb to swallowing financial cyanide with "a few sweeteners" added. And for the sake of the future of good legislation in the United States, I hope they will seriously consider single subject reform in the future!