December 1, 2017
I’m sending this letter to you because my own state’s GOP Senator, Pat Toomey, stopped even pretending to listen to his constituents the day after his re-election. Since then, his offices have been known to turn off their phones, refuse to clean out voice-mail boxes, insult and ignore visitors by labeling them “paid protestors” (which in some cases was half true–the protestor part–but in most was untrue on both counts), and generally pretend like they weren’t hearing tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians calling on him not to vote the way he’s voted on healthcare and tax policy.
So, sadly, we Pennsylvanians who aren’t in the bag for Wall Street financiers and corporate raiders are left to turn to you in hopes that you’ll listen to us better than your colleague who gets paid to hear us.
And the message is simple: vote down this lunatic tax bill. It helps nobody but ultra-wealthy large-business/corporate ownership, and it does so at the expense of everyone else. Obviously, you’re more conservative than I am and won’t lose sleep over the slashing of benefits that many working people depend on, but you all know perfectly well this bill will do nothing except explode the deficit so that people who don’t need more can have it at the expense of everybody else.
I’m deeply saddened that I have to reach out this way to Senators who have your own constituencies to deal with, but since Senator Toomey no longer listens to anyone but his corporate masters, I’m left with little choice. Somebody needs to hear it, and if it’s not Senator Toomey, I hope it’s you. Otherwise millions of citizens are left voiceless, and as US Senators, I hope you realize how dangerous that is.
Thanks for your consideration.
February 3, 2017
Just a few minutes ago, I was finally able to stomach reading your statement explaining your Yes vote for Betsy DeVos’ nomination to serve as Secretary of Education.
I’ll set aside my substantive disagreements with your claims about her. I think you’re wrong about every one of them. And you know that, since you sent me a letter almost two months ago making essentially identical claims, to which I responded substantively.
What’s more important at this point, as far as I’m concerned, is to call attention to what many Pennsylvania citizens must recognize as a simple truth–your constituency voiced strong and sustained opposition to this nomination, which you simply refuse to listen to, or even to acknowledge. Social media documents thousands and thousands of phone calls, letters, tweets, office visits, faxes, and more to make clear that we wanted you to vote against Betsy DeVos. Of course, neither does your statement acknowledge the more than $60,000 in campaign contributions you’ve received from the DeVos family, or the fact that you were away from town last weekend in Florida collecting massive amounts of money at a Koch Brothers’ organized event.
It’s clear who you believe butters your bread, Senator Toomey, but it’s time for you to start wrapping your head around this: we will not forget this. We will not forget that you hung us out to dry in favor of serving your paymasters, that you made a profoundly reckless decision about one of the most important positions in this country, and that you pretend not even to know how wildly unpopular that decision is.
Or put another way, if you’re waiting for the Memory Hole to swallow this moment, you’d better think again about that. We won’t forget.
Seth Kahn, West Chester PA