Congressman David Schweikert recently shared his thoughts regarding keeping promises to the American voters (“We must remain unwavering in keeping our promise to American voters,” March 18, AFN). In his opinion piece, he stated that, “we must have an honest conversation.” This is an overdue conversation. However, preceding this comment Schweikert’s opinion is sorely tainted with partisanship. Schweikert uses the term “Obama-care” repeatedly. There is no piece of legislation that is titled “Obama-care.” It is a term, like “Hillary-care,” that is used to disparage health care reform. While Schweikert used this term in his campaign, we are no longer in campaign season, we are in a time when governing is needed. How can one have an honest conversation when politics of personal gain, partisanship and disparagement precede the conversation?
Schweikert makes a characterization that the Republican Party seeks deficit reduction and a balanced budget and that Democrats are the “Big Spenders.” No Republican administration has ever balanced the budget. Ronald Reagan, despite raising taxes, was unable in eight years to provide the voters with a balanced budget. During the first President Bush administration, which also raised taxes, the budget was never balanced. The second President Bush tried lowering taxes, and failed to balance the federal budget. In fact, his administration is famous for saying that “deficits don’t matter!” A Democratic administration did indeed balance the budget and left a surplus, which was immediately squandered by the Republican Party.
Schweikert seeks to characterize Democrats as being “committed as ever to big spending policies.” This flies in the face of the truth! History verifies that the Republican Party has had the larger commitment to deficit spending and the legislative record is filled with examples of deficit legislation of the Republican Party.
We, the American voters, call on our congressional delegation to be honest with us. Schweikert is massaging the truth for his own political gain.
Schweikert concludes his opinion piece with the statement that “it was failure of both political parties to take responsibility.” How true. Schweikert only offers partisan misstatements, partisan solutions, partisan jargon and a miscalculation of the wishes of the American voter.
Yes, we need an honest conversation. But the conversation must be honest.