What I am Hearing...
Some professional politicians like to talk -- I prefer to listen. I am running for Congress to represent US and to listen to your concerns. Here is what people in the communities that comprise the 8th Congressional District in New York have been telling me:
Economy/Jobs: Many in the district have lost their jobs and are concerned that Mr. Nadler continues to endorse policies which prevent businesses from growing, investing and hiring. They also wonder why Mr. Nadler has failed to stand up for the financial services and medical sciences industries that create and provide the most jobs in our district.
Ground Zero Mosque: Many in our community are upset about having a mosque built near Ground Zero. They see this as an issue of respect, common decency and sensitivity to the feelings of the families of the victims of 9/11. It is not a question of religious freedom or a question of the right to build a mosque. It's a question of a poor location.
A representative from Mr. Nadler's office described those speaking in opposition to the mosque as engaging in "hate speech" and Mr. Nadler recently accused them of being "shameful and divisive". But theirs isn't hate speech; it's sensitivity speech. It's an honest expression of their feelings—a passionate plea for respect and understanding. Unfortunately, Mr. Nadler not only doesn't listen, but he demonizes and marginalizes members of our community who espouse a different view from his or dare to ask legitimate questions.
KSM Trial: Many in our community are upset about the plan to have Khalid Sheik Muhammad—the confessed mastermind of 9/11 and the confessed murderer of Daniel Pearl - tried in a civilian court right in our district. They believe that as an enemy he should be tried in a military tribunal. They believe this is the wrong idea and the wrong location. Yet Mr. Nadler supports it. As a matter of fact, Mr. Nadler espouses the view that we should completely eliminate military tribunals and give all enemies the rights afforded criminal defendants in our civilian courts.
This is a prime example of Mr. Nadler's misrepresentation throughout his 18 years in Congress. Inexplicably, he's more concerned with terrorists' rights than with terrorists' wrongs.
Deficit: Many people want us to stop spending money we don't have. They want us to reduce the multi-trillion dollar deficit that impedes any true and sustained economic recovery and makes us dependent on nations with which we don't share common values.
No Bang For The Buck: Many people are upset because they're paying high taxes yet the schools are overcrowded and St. Vincent's Hospital has closed. New Yorkers get back only about 85% of what they pay to the federal government in taxes. Why isn't Mr. Nadler representing US?
Terrorism: Many of our neighbors are upset that New York remains the number one terrorism target in America. Ours is the district in which Ground Zero is situated and in which a nearly-catastrophic terrorist attack was very recently averted in Times Square. Rather than looking out for US-- Representative Nadler has made a career of attempting to undermine the intelligence and defense capabilities of our city and our nation to defend US from those seeking to do us harm. For example, he has refused to support the Patriot Act, a measure which received substantial bi-partisan support to give our government the critical tools necessary to protect us in the aftermath of September 11th.
Healthcare: Many people are concerned about health care reform. Will they lose the ability to choose their own doctors? Will they lose access to certain treatments? I have listened to many doctors in our district who explained that the new legislation will result in higher costs, poor quality of care, and less available care for people, overall. It forces deep cuts in Medicare spending at the expense of seniors, who have paid into the system their entire lives. Who was Mr. Nadler representing when he voted for this legislation?
Many of our neighbors are frustrated about the unsavory and insensitive manner in which this monumental piece of legislation was "rammed down the throats" of the American people without giving them sufficient time to review the bill and express their views. The 2000 plus page government takeover of our healthcare system was posted on the internet for a mere 3 days. Mr. Nadler voted for this legislation without reading or understanding it. Particularly disturbing was Speaker Pelosi's comment that - "you have to pass the bill before you know what is in it". Many of our neighbors are deeply concerned that thousands of new bureaucrats will make medical decisions instead of their doctors and will limit their choice of health plans.
Ethics and Corruption: Many people are upset about the corruption coming out of government and the lack of integrity in our election and political processes. They wonder why Mr. Nadler's has turned a blind eye rather than calling for appropriate investigations.
Israel: Many people are disappointed with the Obama Administration's insensitive treatment of Israel. They want us to be true to our allies and tough on our enemies. As most of the elected officeholders in New York have abided the abuse, disrespect and even endangerment of our close ally, they seek true leaders in Congress and in our communities to stand up and speak out on behalf of the safety and security of Israel. They believe a strong Israel means a safe America.
What I Would Do
Here's what I will do as your member of Congress. I will look out for US.
I believe to achieve prosperity and create opportunity we must tap what has always been our greatest resource - the innovation and ingenuity of our people. In order to unleash the entrepeneurial spirit and create jobs, we need to stimulate the private sector, not the public sector. We need to stop strangling our citizens and our businesses with overtaxation and red tape.
I will lower taxes and make the tax code simpler. I will do away with the alternative minimum tax, the Death Tax and other taxes which presently increase the burden on many of the residents in our district. We need consumer spending - not government spending.
I will make elimination of the federal deficit a top priority. Excessive government debt ultimately impoverishes the nation: it distorts monetary values, diminishes foreign policy freedom and crowds out private borrowing.
I will also create incentives to make capital available to small businesses and reduce regulations to stimulate entrepeneurship in fashion, medicine, tourism and financial services.
I will lead the charge to fix healthcare. I believe that to improve our healthcare system we need more competition - not more bureaucracy. This massive legislation will strike a bruising blow to our economy, to medical excellence and to our freedom. Our healthcare system could be improved with a more common sense approach - not a 2000 plus page government takeover of our healthcare industry. Some say that is the way it is done in Washington. I say it can be done differently. I will address the problem more directly by pooling insurance for small businesses to reduce premium costs; adopting professional liability reform; providing tax credits for the provision of healthcare services to lower income individuals and providing companies more flexibility in terms of the types of products and services offered, particularly independent business owners and contractors. Additionally, we will create an incubator for biomedical innovations emerging from our local universities and hospitals.
In matters of national security, I will support a strong national defense and fight to ensure that our City obtains in a timely fashion the requisite homeland security funding to combat terrorism. I will continue to stand up against the trial of KSM in New York and put the safety and security of our citizens ahead of the so-called rights of terrorists everytime.
In our relations with others, I believe it is critical that we operate from a position of moral clarity and strength. It is important that we never apologize for the historic role of our great nation in promoting and defending freedom. It is our greatest legacy for which so many have sacrificed so much. We must remain true to our friends and tough on our enemies.
I will continue to stand with my neighbors, and the families of the victims of September 11 in opposition to the construction of a mosque near the sacred site of Ground Zero.
I have and will continue to stand up and support our ally Israel when she is treated insensitively by this Administration while many of our elected officials, including Mr. Nadler, have abided her abuse, disrespect and even endangerment. I believe that we must protect the right of Israel to defend herself.
This is the direct opposite of Mr. Nadler's approach and that's why this election is about both a choice and a referendum. The choice is between the status quo- Mr. Nadler, or an independent voice that will represent US—me. The referendum is on Mr. Nadler's record.