Friday, November 26, 2010

Open Letter to Congressman Tom Rooney of Florida

I received your e-mail regarding your decision to vote against extending unemployment benefits. I can't help but think that this decision was taken along party lines and represents further Republican obstructionism calculated to make the Obama administration look bad. While I applaud your sense that we need to put an end to failed strategies and do something constructive to create jobs, I can't believe that punishing the victims of the economic collapse is the correct way to accomplish this.

I'm a registered Republican. I've voted a nearly straight Republican ticket for as long as I can remember. I'm not a Tea Party protester or a crackpot. I'm a pragmatist who believes we need sensible compromise to work our way out of the fix we're in. I've had it up to here with partisan bickering and overwrought idealogues. You guys need to work together to move us forward, and you need to do it now.

You can't wait until you have a Republican in the White House and a majority in the Senate as Well. America does not have that long. Furthermore, neither the Republicans nor the Democrats have demonstrated that they are able get anything meaningful done in that happy circumstance anyway. We need viable solutions now, and that means there are necessarily going to be some ideas from the Democrats included in the mix. Please find us a way forward, and, while you're at it, try to find one that does not sacrifice me and thousands of other long term unemployed citizens on the altar of fiscal responsibility. We didn't do anything to deserve this, and so far you haven't done anything to help.

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