It seems Democrats are fiscally minded

Published 8:25 am Thursday, July 30, 2009

This letter is responding to Freeborn County Republican Chairman Al Arends’ Tribune column critical of Robin Brown’s voting on several issues. He lists her votes to:

1. Eliminate funding for JOBZ, which helps finance new businesses.

2. Eliminate deductibility of interest paid on home mortgages.

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3. Limit total deduction for charitable contributions.

4. Eliminate deductions and tax credits for donated organs.

5. Tax home heating oil.

6. Raise the income tax rate on those making over $300,000 per year.

Al feels that these votes of hers were not good decisions for our state or our nation.

All of us are aware of the shortage of government funds at every level — school districts, local and county governments, and state and federal — and of the difficulty of balancing all of them, especially the monstrous federal budget with lower income tax receipts and all of the anti-recession spending going on.

It you’ll recall, the last time we had a balanced federal budget was under Clinton. It was under George Bush that the federal budget ballooned. We went to war in Iraq and made no attempt to raise taxes to cover the expense of the war. Over the last 20 years party-line positions on government debt have pretty much reversed. It used to be that the Republicans were the ones that wanted balanced budgets and low debt levels, and it was the Democrats that supported more social programs and pushed for higher government spending levels.

In this case, the Democrats, Robin Brown among them, are trying to raise taxes and cut expenses to achieve some level of budget balance which good management would have them do.

I’m sure that Robin Brown would consider any suggestions the Republican Party might offer which would cut government expenses and/or increases government income.

Certainly Al Arends is to be commended for taking on his party’s county chairmanship and for fostering a local dialogue on political questions. Our nation requires two healthy political parties to function at its best. And I’m sure Robin Brown would give careful consideration to any positive suggestions he might offer. Al has listed several measures he didn’t like her vote on. What measures could he suggest that would better serve our country?

George Ehrhardt

Albert Lea