By Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) Chairman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce - 08/09/10 11:15 PM EDT
Last week, The Hill grossly distorted my views about the upcoming elections (“Waxman sees bright side to November: ‘Difficult’ Democrats won’t be back” 8/5). I appreciate this opportunity to set the record straight.
One of the great strengths of the Democratic Party is its diversity. We are blessed to have members who bring to the table divergent experiences and perspectives because this helps ensure our policies are ones that will benefit all Americans.
This Congress has a remarkable record of accomplishment. We have passed healthcare legislation, financial reform, education reform, a vital economic recovery act and many other important bills. With little or no Republican support, these legislative accomplishments were achieved because Democrats from across the spectrum found ways to find consensus. I am proud that I was part of this process and thankful for the crucial contributions made by moderate members of the Energy and Commerce Committee and the Democratic caucus.
Given the current political realities whereby Republicans have refused to work on a bipartisan basis, we need as large a Democratic majority as possible in the House and the Senate so we can continue fighting for American families. For those who support universal health coverage, clean-energy policies, and economic stimulus for our struggling economy — as I do — there can be no bright side to the defeat of any Democratic members of Congress. The Hill was categorically wrong to report otherwise.
Hodes’s special interests far outweigh contender’s
Robert M. Collinsworth
As a New Hampshire resident, I feel the need to insert some semblance of truth into the rhetoric coming from the Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) camp:
Hodes is accusing Kelly Ayotte of being supported by special interests. If that isn’t the pot calling the kettle black, I don’t know what is. I believe that Paul Hodes has collected more special interest money during his time in politics than Kelly Ayotte could collect in 20 years.
According to MapLight.org, Hodes has four typewritten pages worth of special interest contributions from financial/insurance/real estate alone; another typewritten page worth from construction special interests; another typewritten page from teachers unions, another typewritten page of contributions from health and pharmaceutical special interests; another typewritten page of contributions from big labor; six typewritten pages of contributions from lawyers and lobbyists; another two typewritten pages of contributions from miscellaneous business special interest groups and individuals; and another five typewritten pages of contributions from other miscellaneous individuals such as school districts, various state governments and various municipal governments, including many from out of state.