Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Open Letter To Rep. Abler

Dear, Rep. Abler,

I listened, with great interest, to your speech on the House Floor last Monday. While I was dead set against the bill, I was willing to listen to a divergent opinion on the subject. Apparently, based on your remarks, I was the only one of that mindset. I listened to you go on about how so many people from other districts contacted you and how you had over 800 emails and how you were searching for a "local" one. Well, using that "logic" Rep. Abler, since I am in Scott County, does that mean only my representatives in Scott County can raise my taxes? While I wish that were the case (I have two very fiscally conservative representatives in Mike Beard and Mark Buesgens) I know that is not the case. Therefore, since representatives who are outside of my district can raise my taxes, then I think that I am well within my rights to lobby said representatives.

Another thing that struck my about your speech was your insistence that people who publically opposed the bill (like Phil Krinkie and Jason Lewis) didn't tell the whole story about what was in the bill and yet you did the same thing. You never mentioned (in your floor speech in defense of the bill) that the quarter percent sales tax increase was dedicated to light rail! You also never mentioned the 3.5 cent gas tax surcharge that goes on top of the two cent gas tax increase. You mentioned that the gas tax is dedicated to roads and yet you neglect to mention that the Trunk Highway funding formula takes most of the gas tax money that is raised in the Cities and sends it outstate where the needs are not as dire! You also neglected to mention the surcharge on leased and rental vehicles that is in this bill. It is obvious to me, that there is cherry picking of information going on from both sides. I would assume that someone so passionate about the whole story being told would be the one to tell the whole story. Clearly I was mistaken.

It seems to me that your mind was made up on this issue from the get go and no amount of input from anyone outside of your special interest groups (i.e. the Chamber) was going to change your mind. I can appreciate that, but please do not be surprised when the voters, the people you are supposed to represent rally against you. And do not be surprised when taxpayers interestes from outside of your district take an active roll in helping replace you. After all, you worked hard to take money away from taxpayers outside of your district. Can you really blame them for trying to prevent that in the future?

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