Monday, October 20, 2014

My Reply [the closest thing to a debate on the issues possible with Paul Cook dodging forums]

[SINCE PAUL COOK WON'T ATTEND CANDIDATE FORUMS--THIS IS MY SUBSTITUTE FOR ISSUE BY ISSUE COMPARISONS--it replies to an article ( that appeared in the San Bernardino Sentinal newspaper, the link to which is above in the title] 
Mark (the publisher of the San Bernardino Sentinel):
Its obvious that Paul Cook avoids the issues, forums and debates at which the issues can be aired out. His votes are terrible for our District!!
1. The 100,000 acres he "saved" for off-road vehicle use is illusory. I was in 29 Palms this past Saturday talking with off roaders and they know the truth--the Marines have the right to take it back all the land by simply saying they need it for training. It was an illusory "save" of the resource-- a face-saving smoke and mirror rear action;
2. As for prioritizing VA claims, ask him what the changes were, and did he and his fellow Boehner adherents really do anything? They are mostly Vietnam vets whose problem is with the underfunded claim review and appeal system, the inadequate staffing at VA facilities (the House refused to take up the McCain-Sanders VA bill which would increase staffing) and having little to no VA sponsored advocacy assistance (which the private sector can be encourage to help with appropriate legislation)--additionally, NOTHING was done by the republican Congress' bill to improve staffing to handle the claim review (and appeals) more objectively and comprehensively for not just this election cycle, but the future
3. The land exchange is interesting, but the people, tribes and or agencies whose land the federal government would be taking haven't been asked if they are ok with it. Is this another government taking without compensation in the wind?
4. Taking credit for reducing the deficit is funny--the sequestration did that which had nothing to do with the current Congress; sorry Paul, don't claim credit where you did not do anything except collect your salary and send out misleading newsletters and flyers;
5. Cook's votes will INCREASE the deficit--just over time so he does not get blamed?
(a) Cook's vote on  HR 2575 will increase the Budget deficit $25.4 billion for the period of 2015-2019 and by $73.7 billion over the 2015-2024 period according to the Congressional Budget Office & the Joint Committee on Taxation, non partisan think tanks
(b) Cook voted yeah on another (duplicative) "Research Tax Credit"--the problem is that cost was not paid for by reductions in any other programs--the effect, taxes will have to be increased to subsidize those giveaways;
(c) Abandoning the Affordable Care Act, will INCREASE the costs of Medicare by taking away the "Young Senior" benefits (aged 50-64), making the people to make it to Medicare eligibility, more impacted by chronic diseases and degenerative conditions that will not get the medical management they would under the "Young Senior" ACA benefits;
6. Paul Cook's makes the claim he wants to fight for constitutional rights--he really does not mean that when he complains he is being "attacked" by me and Paul Hanosh--first, he dodged every forum and debate set up, so its not really clear what his positions are and how (and if) he can back them; second,  Paul needs a history lesson--in the Marines, questioning the authority of your leaders may be an attack; in federal political elections [a new forum for someone highly protected by the State GOP for years--maybe too much so]  we need to distinguish ourselves and be able to stand up and defend the claims being made so the people have the basis to make an informed choice--it's called robust debate--a constitutional principal under the first amendment, so why is he criticizing his opponents? Does he want everyone to get blinded by the service medals and title and, like in the Marine Corps, just shut up?? We have not, and will not Paul Cook. Get a backbone and just maybe if you win, you can really become the leader in Congress you haven't been; third, Paul voted yes to HR 3964, which strips our agencies and courts of the review time they have always needed to look at water project proposals--this is avoiding free speech for special interests to steal water from farmers--with Cadiz and PG&E, don't we have enough of that going on Paul? Opps, I forgot how Cook loves them corporations, giving Monsanto immunity to legal actions and price fixing power over aspects of the agricultural industry they are increasingly controlling;
7. Lowering taxes is the OPPOSITE of what he has done--consider the following:
   (a). Cook voted yeah on HR 4935, bill which will take away a tax credit of $1,725 per year FROM 5,000,000 single moms with two children and cutting the tax credit for 6,000,000 more single moms--that is a TAX increase Mr. Cook!
   (b) HR 4935 will INCREASE the tax credit for families with children making $150,000 per year to $2,200-nothing like taking care of the well heeled at the expense of the lower income families struggling
   (c) Cook increased the government guaranteed student loan interest rate--a de facto tax hike for struggling students that we want to stay off public assistance;.
8. Cook's legislative votes will take jobs away
   HR 5078 & HR 3964 (which Cook voted for) will cost California thousands of jobs per the Congressional Budget Office as it will created penalties for employers, that they will have to pay with reduced hours/potentially layoffs and/or force fields to go fallow for new corporate farmers, which will cause more loss in existing local jobs;
9. The lead statement in your article, if from Cook, is nothing short of amazing [Inadequate Presidential Response Shifts the Burden to Congress]. Boehner, Cook's boss, had roughly 93 days of session, but were paid for a year of work--working a third of the year is hardly taking on a burden.
Cook needs to defend his votes with something more specific than he is being attacked.  I want a chance to be a part of the solution-finding process--not rubber-stamping failed policies and tactics.
Bob Conaway
Candidate for the 8th CD

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