In an article written by Jen Hayden on Jan. 22, she takes issue with Sen. Joni Ernst’s, R-Iowa, claim of her humble beginnings and how they made ends meet by the sweat on their brow and the dirt on their hands. Actually members of her family had a lot of help from the government.
They received $425,000 from the feds, mostly from corn subsidies. In addition, a construction company owned by her father received more than $200,000 in county contracts while she served as auditor of Montgomery County, Iowa, despite a strict conflict of interest code governing the provision of contracts to family members of county officials. Ernst talked about covering her shoes in bread bags, but she failed to mention the assistance received from the government and the contracts her father got from the county.
This is relevant because Ernst seems hypocritical when she opposes mothers and fathers in this country, including Fallon, receiving a $3,000 per child tax credit to help cover day care cost for their children. It’s not enough, but it helps. President Obama’s proposal recognizes the necessity of both parents to work in today’s economy. The Federal Government provided universal day care during World War II when out of necessity women had to work in factories to support the War effort.
Ernst is also against raising the minimum wage which would benefit many in Fallon. The President challenged members of Congress to try living on $15,000 a year if they aren’t going to raise the minimum wage. I’ll go one step further. If they don’t raise it we should cut their pay to the minimum wage. At that rate many of them would still be overpaid. Like most Republicans Ernst just says “NO” to anything that might help the poor and the middle class. The Republicans claim most of those making the minimum wage are teens, and the rest are unskilled workers in training.
That’s just not true.
Many are supporting families, including many single mothers. A recent NY Times study found the average age for those making the minimum wage is 35, and 88 percent are over the age of 20.
“NO” is also Ernst’s likely answer to a seven day paid sick leave for all workers, equal pay for women, free two year community colleges, and six weeks maternity leave; all proposed by President Obama in his State of the Union Address.. I wonder how she will vote if the question of corn subsidies comes up?
She is also opposed to the President’s tax proposal, which would lower taxes on all but the top one percent. She, like many Republicans, are misleading the American people by leading them to believe the president is going to raise everyone’s taxes. It just isn’t true. Again, listen up, he proposes to cut taxes for all but the top one percent. A recent study by Oxfam concluded that the wealthiest one percent will control half the world’s wealth by 2016. Rather than raise taxes on those folks Ernst and her cohorts will scuttle the President‘s plan altogether denying the rest of us a tax cut. Incredible!
The President proposal to raise taxes on the top one percent is to pay for tax cuts for the lower and middle class, and the child care tax credit. The Republicans say we can’t afford the tax credit, but we could if they wouldn’t stubbornly refuse to raise taxes on a few Americans who are making so much they won’t even notice it. As always the very rich will find favor with the GOP, while the lower and middle class are sold out. By the way, do you think the tax hike on the top one percent will affect anyone here in Fallon? I doubt it seriously.
In her response to President Obama’s State of the Union Address, Ernst also spoke briefly about the Republican support of the Keystone Pipeline, which, thank goodness, the president has promised to veto. Ernst talked about the thousands of jobs building the pipeline will provide. She failed to mention the jobs are temporary except those needed to fix leaks and clean up the environment later on; however, she and the other Republicans are prepared to just say “NO” to the president’s plan to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure which would provide millions of high paying construction jobs for many years.
I honestly can’t think of a single proposal the President made in his State of the Union Address that the majority of American people don’t support. How can the President work with people who just say “NO” to everything?
Glen McAdoo, a Fallon resident, can be contacted at glynn@ phonewave.net.