WASHINGTON WATCH: Saved by the bell – again | NevadaAppeal.com

WASHINGTON WATCH: Saved by the bell – again

Janice Ayres
For the Nevada Appeal

I see we survived another possible government shutdown by the Senate, by only a hair’s breadth, and it took less game-playing this time to reach that goal. Let’s see what the Republican House does. Congress needs to look at their disapproval rating of 80 percent and wake up and shape up.

The American people have sent a strong message to Congress that they are fed up with the political nonsense and posturing from the party of “no” that has stagnated this country from moving toward economic recovery. Americans want a Congress that can work together harmoniously for the good of the country and not for what is good for a person’s re-election and political party.

I have never before seen so many Nevada candidates courting the senior vote. It is as if they suddenly realize that one-fourth of the Nevada population is over 55 years of age, and know the issues and vote. Seniors need to be aware that they can’t always believe what candidates say, and should look more closely at what a candidate actually does. Look at their congressional voting record. You can go online and see how Nevada’s delegation voted on any particular bill and check for yourself. One of the many online sites that track congressional voting records is http://washingtonvotes.org/. That is where I get my information.

The official 111th Congress voting record for 2010 is in. Votes on positive senior issues is as follows: With 100 percent being the highest score for positive senior issues, Sen. Dean Heller’s score was 13 percent, Rep. Shelley Berkley’s was 96 percent, and former Rep. Dina Titus’ was 100 percent. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s was 97 percent, and former Sen. John Ensign’s was 8 percent.

Since Rep. Joe Heck replaced Titus, he has consistently supported revamping Social Security (which he calls a Ponzi scheme), Medicare and Medicaid, and voted to terminate 1 million volunteers by voting for HR1, which did away with the Corporation for National and Community Service, which oversees the million volunteers. Thankfully HR1 was defeated by the Senate. Heller voted for HR1 when he was a congressman and said that when he became a senator he would vote for it again because it was part of Rep. Paul Ryan’s plan to do away with entitlements, and he supports Ryan.

In the upcoming election, seniors need to forget all the hype you will see, hear and read and just check on candidates’ voting records and then vote according to your needs and beliefs regardless of a candidate’s political party. Seniors need to stand up for their rights and not be dictated to by politicians whose main concerns are their re-election and their partisan politics. Get what you need from the people in Washington, D.C., or get someone else in Congress. You are in the driver’s seat and don’t forget it. Stay tuned.

• Janice Ayres is president of Nevada Senior Corps Association.