My local Republican congressman was reelected by a surprisingly narrow margin, given that this is a conservative, rural area. He has voted lockstep with the Republicans for the last two years and I regularly get glossy mail from him extolling the virtues of tax cuts for job creators and ending regulations that hurt businesses (I assume he means gas extraction companies). I expect he stands with Boehner on the fiscal cliff.
This is the letter I wrote him, urging a more responsible fiscal policy. It's not perfect, but I'm an ordinary citizen, not a professional writer. I think many of our elected representatives would benefit from hearing from their constituents right now; they are public servants after all, and should serve the public interest.
It can't hurt to remind them.
Dear Congressman:Link to find contact information for Representatives
As your constituent I am relieved to learn you are worried about the national debt. As you should know, the national debt is smaller now than it was four years ago and with the ending of the war in Afghanistan and the costs related to an active war behind us, we stand a good chance of seeing that debt reduced further.
Given the national debt, it is fiscally irresponsible to extend the Bush Tax Cuts that were enacted when we had a budget surplus. As we know, tax cuts for the very wealthy do not have a positive effect on the economy nor do they create jobs. These are facts. The Congressional Research Service has definitively documented that, as you are no doubt aware. The CBO reports that ending the tax cuts for the very rich will have no effect at all on the economy. I urge you to be fiscally responsible and allow the Bush Tax Cuts to expire.
However, I appreciate your concern for tax relief needed for working families and small business, so I'm sure we can count on your support for tax cuts for the first $250, 000 of income for American families and small business. That provides tax relief for 100% of all Americans.
I don't think much of your 10%-25% tax plan, as that is essentially a tax break for the very wealthy and reduces government revenue to irresponsible levels without doing anything for our national debt or national economy. I don't know about you but I like driving on good roads and being able to count on public services like my local law enforcement and fire department. Your tax plan guts money for the national infrastructure and our American way of life, where the food is safe, water is clean, where regulations protect our citizens from fraud, where our towns are secure from crime, and our children receive good educations at our public schools. These things cost money, and incidentally, create jobs too. Last I knew a health inspector has a job. I heard Mr. Romney say "Governments don't make jobs" during one of the debates, which I thought particularly ironic since he wanted a government job.
If you are looking for ways to save money, a good place to start are tax subsidies for oil companies that show huge profits but don't pay taxes. Exxon leaps to mind.
Please remember, Congressman Reed, Grover Norquist does not speak for most Americans nor is he an elected official.
Thanks for your concern.