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I am responding to Eugene Elander's letter regarding Rep. Tom Graves not voting to give more money to "those brave first responders who were heroes on Sept 11."
I can't know what was in Graves' mind but I do know that it is not in the U.S. Constitution for the federal government to give money to whomever the cause celeb of the day happens to be. Hopefully, Graves takes seriously his oath to uphold the Constitution. Too many of our elected officials do not.
That argument aside, how much of the proposed bill for, "The long-overdue medical and related benefits," was for legal fees? Originally it was more than $2 billion, and the lawyers would not even have had to go to court. We can thank Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma for that small victory.
Also, all of these "brave responders" were not fire and police but most were construction workers cleaning up. I expect that all of them have very comprehensive medical benefits provided by their union medical plans that will cover any real and documented illnesses. They have also already received lump sum payments form the state of New York.
How many of them really have serious medical problems and how many are taking advantage of the system? We will never know.
He stated, "Perhaps he is just trying to save public money" and then dismiss the comment. I hope to goodness that is what he is trying to do. As a prior FEMA employee, you may not know what economic life is like in the real world. Those of us that work in the real economy and pay taxes need more people like Graves looking out for our interests and our money.
As for his voting against the, "Protecting Students from Violent and Sexual Predators Act," where again, is this a federal government responsibility? I for one don't want the federal government to expand its powers any further that those already enumerated in the Constitution. States already have laws against violent and sexual predators; we don't need more overlapping and redundant laws. We just need fewer bleeding hearts when we prosecute the predators we arrest now.
This was just silly "feel good" legislation that would accomplish nothing but a further expansion of the federal government into our daily lives. Enough already.
Thank you, Congressman Graves, for defending the Constitution and for standing up for our rights.