Eye On Modesto

Thoughts and observations about Modesto and Stanislaus County

Archive for the day “April 13, 2012”

Who Will Run with Mitt?

EOM Staff

Now that Mitt Romney has basically secured the GOP nomination for president, the question becomes who will run as vice-president?

As we learned from the McCain/Palin campaign, this can be a make or break issue for a nominee.  Two names that have been tossed out there already are Chris Christie, Republican Governor of New Jersey, and Mark Rubio, Republican Senator from Florida.

We need to know as much about the person running for VP as we do the presidential candidate.  After all, they are just a heartbeat away from the presidency.  Here is some interesting information about each of these gentlemen:

Governor Christie recently cancelled what would be the largest public works project in the nation.  That would be the expansion of the underground rail that transport commuters under the Hudson River between New York and New Jersey.  Governor Christie announced that New Jersey would have to pay for 70% of the project.  The GAO (government accountability office) has said that New Jersey would only pay 14.4% of the costs.  Governor Christie also said that New Jersey would be responsible for any cost overruns, however the federal government has made several offers to share any cost overruns.  After cancelling the project, the governor steered $4 billion from the project to the transportation trust fund.  This fund is typically financed by gasoline tax and was nearly bankrupt.  By steering the money from the public works project to the trust fund, Governor Christie was able to avoid breaking a campaign promise he made not to raise the gasoline tax.

I wonder how many jobs were lost when this project was cancelled.  How much potential income was lost by engineers and construction workers? And I think it’s inappropriate for any politician to make a “promise” that he knows he probably won’t be able to keep.

Now the thousands of commuters that travel from New Jersey to New York and back each day will continue to do so on a single track shared by Amtrak and commuter trains.  And this track is a century old.

So, Governor Christie has kept his campaign promise not to raise the gasoline tax.  But jobs were lost and the infrastructure between New Jersey and New York is crumbling.  This isn’t beneficial to anyone and amounts to simple “campaign posturing”.  Is this the type of politician you would want as vice-president?

Mark Rubio, Republican Senator from Florida, was in support of the recently shot down “Blunt Amendment”.  Remember, this amendment would have allowed any employer to refuse to provide insurance coverage for anything they had a moral objection to.  We’re not talking about religious institutions.  We’re talking about ANY employer that provides insurance benefits for its employees.  And we’re not talking about a religious objection, but a moral objection.  It’s entirely possible, that had the Blunt Amendment passed, your employer could chose not to cover contraception.  Or pre-natal care for unmarried women.  Or blood transfusions.  Or treatment for cervical cancer (because it is caused by a virus that is transmitted sexually).  Your employer would not even have to give a reason, simply say that he has a moral objection to your needed medical care.

This amendment would have allowed your employer to have complete control over what medical care you received.  Do we really need our bosses to determine our healthcare?  Isn’t that better left to our physicians?

Has Ann Romney Ever Worked?

EOM Staff

According to Hillary Rosen, a democratic strategist (although not connected to the Obama campaign), Ann Romney “has never worked a day in her life”.  There has been quite an uproar over this statement, and some have decided that democrats are now waging a war on women.  Certainly, Ms. Rosen could have chosen a better way to express what many American women feel when considering Mitt Romney for president.  He is now putting his wife out there as a way of appealing to women voters.  I, along with countless other women, certainly support Mrs. Romney’s decision to be a stay at home mother.  There is no more important job in the world than raising good children to become good adults.  But where the Romneys fail to appeal to women voters is that with their vast wealth they have no idea what it is like to work full-time (and possibly a part-time job), pay for day care, gas, electricity, water, insurance, food, rent and all the other expenses involved in day to day life.  And on top of that they lose the opportunity to spend more time with their children.

Does anyone actually believe the Romneys understand that the majority of families in America have to have two incomes to support themselves?  That choosing to be a stay at home mom isn’t even an option for many of us?  If you are a low-income family, both parents work.  Many families sole support is the mother’s income.  Even if you are a middle-class family, you need two incomes to survive.  I doubt the Romneys really have a clue that most of us juggle which bill to pay this month and which we can put off until next month.  I certainly don’t believe they lay awake at night wondering if they can possibly send a child to college?  Or worry about losing their home due to medical expenses.  The majority of foreclosures in America are due to medical bills not covered by insurance.  And so many American families are living without insurance.

Mrs. Romney responded to the comment by saying that we should all respect the choice that each woman and mother makes.  Yes, we should.  She was fortunate to be able to make that choice without her family suffering financially.  For most American woman, there is no choice.  We have to work if we want our children to eat. I just don’t believe the Romneys have any idea what life is like for you and me.

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