For Congress: Davis understands issues better
Gary Andersen, Lee Smith, Christine Rupp
POSTED: October 24, 2008
The key to solving problems is being able to understand them clearly.
The biggest issue facing the United States in recent months has been the financial meltdown on Wall Street, prompted by the troubles in the U.S. housing market.
The biggest issues facing the United States in the decades to come are the federal government's unfunded liabilities - Medicare and Social Security - and its addiction to spending.
In these cases, our congressman, Tim Walz falls short, especially in comparison to his opponent, Brian Davis.
Walz, a Democrat from Mankato, is convinced that the overwhelming trouble in the housing debacle was an unscrupulous market. He ignores the federal government's responsibility in the form of cheap interest rates; mortgage-interest tax deductibility; the federal backing of and concentration of power in mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae; and the pressure Congress applied to lenders to get home loans to low-income communities.
On federal entitlements, Walz remains stubbornly committed to the status quo, which means insolvency or higher taxes. He uses the ridiculous term "gambling" to describe investing, a practice that would give young people far better returns - and therefore better retirements - than Social Security.
Walz does approve of "investing" when it comes to government projects and programs. Apparently, as long as Congress is in charge of your money, it's OK.
Davis, a Republican from Rochester, makes clear that Congress is addicted to spending, and has been for a long time. He notes that while the Bush tax cuts boosted economic growth and brought in more revenue to the federal treasury, spending has far outpaced it. Davis favors making those tax cuts permanent while cutting spending.
Davis, a doctor, knows health care reform is fundamentally tied to issues such as Medicare insolvency. We can only hope that more physicians like him find their ways into Congress. Having dealt with Medicare's red tape and reimbursements, those in the health care industry understand its shortcomings.
In the end, we believe Davis has a better grasp of the key issues and offers a better fit for constituents in Minnesota's First District. It is for these reasons that we give him our endorsement in this race.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
For Congress: Davis understands issues better
Friday, October 10, 2008
For Immediate Release
October 9th, 2008
Contact: Mike Spellings
Davis Campaign Sets the Record Straight on Walz's Attempt to Distort his Record
Responds to Walz's "Davis ad Watch"
Rochester -- Despite Congressman Walz's effort to paint Brian Davis' campaign ad as "false and misleading," the Walz campaign continues to want to have it both ways. Instead of refuting any of the facts contained in the Davis ad, Walz decided to tout measures that put him on both sides of the issue. This kind of campaigning is in keeping with his desire to have his cake and eat it too, and is what makes citizens so cynical about Washington style politicians.
Davis' ad re-states a point made by the Washington Post: "Timothy Walz has voted with a majority of his Democratic colleagues 96.6% of the time during the current Congress" (http://projects.washingtonpost.com/congress/members/w000799/). The Walz campaign released a document attempting to refute this fact, stating Walz was ranked "moderate" by the National Journal, claiming he is "more conservative than 35.7% of congress." Despite the fact that the National Journal rank falls well short of a "moderate" stance, Walz again attempts to distract from the fact that he votes with liberal leadership over 96% of the time.
In spite of Congressman Walz's claim of being a "moderate," by pointing to an arbitrary score that rates him "more conservative than 35.7% of Congress," The American Conservative Union gave Walz a rating of "0" (zero), in 2007. (http://www.acuratings.org/2007all.htm#MN)
Walz goes on to reference an NRA endorsement to point to his "moderate" stance. However, as the Washington Post points out, this is simply the 3.4% of the time he doesn't vote with his liberal leadership, again falling well short of "moderate." Additionally, while the NRA supports a multifaceted list of candidates, it may not be as pleased with Walz's support for Barack Obama, as they lashed out at Obama's Second Amendment stance citing, "His radical record of opposition to our constitutional rights." Walz also claims a VFW endorsement points to a "moderate" stance. However, as Walz is a veteran himself, it seems rather fitting the VFW would endorse the veteran in the race, as opposed to the "moderate" in the race. Nowhere on the VFW website do they claim to support the candidate with the most "moderate" stance, or even signify that as a prerequisite or consideration for an endorsement. (http://www.vfw.state.mn.us/)
When it comes to the statement that Congressman Walz "voted for a ban on drilling," Walz makes a remarkably misleading statement, intimating that he authored a bill for new drilling: "Walz Drilling Bill Expands Drilling and Funding For Renewables" (sic) (Walz "Davis ad Watch" 10/8/08). However, as there is a total absence of legislation in the Library of Congress bearing Walz's name as the author of such legislation, or legislation by that name, this again points to his disappointing tendency to say one thing in Minnesota and do quite another in Washington, and, in so doing, intentionally mislead the public. (http://www.loc.gov/index.html)
The Davis ad cites 7 votes Walz made that would ban or prohibit the lifting of a ban on expanded drilling:
Voted to block consideration of a bill that would allow oil drilling in ANWR, use the revenues to fund alternative energy research, and prohibit the export of ANWR oil to other countries (House Roll Call 526, 7/24/08)
Voted to block consideration of the American Energy Act, an "all of the above" energy bill (House Roll Call 524, 7/24/08)
Voted to block consideration of a bill that would establish new refineries, allow energy exploration in ANWR and the Outer Continental Shelf, and provide incentives for alternative energies (House Roll Call 391, 6/10/08)
Voted to block consideration of amendments that would allow oil drilling in ANWR (House Roll Call 341, 5/21/08)
Voted to block consideration of a bill that would extend many alternative energy and energy efficiency tax credits, and also block consideration of amendments that would permit oil exploration in the Outer Continental Shelf (House Roll Call 340, 5/21/08)
Voted against comprehensive energy legislation that would allow offshore and ANWR drilling and promote energy efficiency and alternative fuels (House Roll Call 831, 8/4/07)
Voted against lifting the ban on offshore oil and gas drilling (House Roll Call 553, 6/26/07)
Davis notes, a vote to block consideration of a bill is not simply a proxy vote against drilling, it is an outright vote against the furthering of legislation to expand domestic drilling by standing in the way of lifting the ban. Either you are for drilling or you are against it. While Walz attempts to hide his disappointing voting record on energy by pointing to recent votes that include "some drilling," Davis points to a headline in an article published in the Rochester Post Bulletin as recently as June stating, "Walz says no to expanded drilling; opponent says yes" (Rochester Post Bulletin, June 20, 2008, By Matthew Stolle). Walz went on to call expanded drilling a "Red Herring" in the very same article. Are we to believe Congressman Walz now supports what he previously called a "Red Herring?"
Walz notes he voted recently to allow the drilling ban to expire, in the face of mounting public opposition to his long established favor of a drilling ban. However, Davis again points to Walz being on both sides of the issue. As illustrated above, Davis will not allow Walz to simply talk about whichever vote he cast that is the most politically expedient, and ignore his previous opposition to drilling time and time again, as if he has been for drilling all along.
With relation to Walz supporting higher taxes that hurt the family farm, Davis points out Walz's opposition to the elimination of the Estate Tax and that he is in favor of increasing the Capital Gains Tax, as noted in the Congressional National Political Awareness Test, Nov 7, 2006. Farmers who support Walz would be loathed to know he does not support allowing them to pass their family farm down from generation to generation without suffering a massive tax on the transaction, which in some cases, prohibits a family farm from being passed down at all. Walz also cites an endorsement from the National Farmers Union PAC as evidence of his pro-farmer stance. However, despite his inability to receive the Minnesota Farm Bureau endorsement as a sitting congressman in an agricultural district, the National Farmers Union PAC may be slow to inform their members that Walz voted in favor of the "Employee Free Choice Act." The "Employee Free Choice Act" is a deceptively named bill that strips workers of the right to vote by secret ballot in union formation proceedings.
In their endorsement of Brian Davis, the Associated Builders and Contractors point out: "Mr. Davis opposes the fraudulently-named 'Employee Free Choice Act.' This bill would actually take away rights to a free and private election for unionization drives. His opponent [Walz] supports this abuse, and seems to think that employers and union officials should know who votes for or against the union formation. ABC feels that it is unconscionable for Mr. Walz to sell out American workers this way."
As further evidence that Walz says one thing in Minnesota and does another in Washington, the non-partisan political watchdog website ontheissues.org, rates Congressman Walz as "Left Liberal," (http://house.ontheissues.org/House/Tim_Walz.htm) again justifying the statements in Davis' ad.
Finally, other groups have rated Congressman Walz's voting record in a way that further buttresses Davis' claim that Walz has a liberal voting record. The National Taxpayer's Union assessed Mr. Walz's voting record at 3% out of a possible 100%, tied for the worst record in the Minnesota congressional delegation. Also, the Club for Growth has listed Walz's voting record as being 394th out of 435 of members in the U.S. House of Representatives. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has scored Walz's voting record at 60%, also one of the lowest in the Minnesota congressional delegation. Other groups' ratings can be found here: http://www.votesmart.org/issue_rating_category.php?can_id=65443.