On Tuesday, April 30, two of Kasich's top Statehouse lieutenants began moving a so-called "right to work" bill that would eliminate freedoms for working families, threaten workplace safety, and would put profits before people.Sounds like a little something called Senate Bill 5, doesn't it? Apparently Governor Kasich has forgotten what happened the last time he and his Republican allies launched a broadside against the rights of Ohio workers.
We are not going to have a Supreme Court that will overturn Roe versus Wade. There will be no more Antonin Scalias and Samuel Alitos added to this court. We’re not going to repeal health reform. Nobody is going to kill Medicare and make old people in this generation or any other generation fight it out on the open market to try to get themselves health insurance. We are not going to do that! We are not going to give a 20 percent tax cut to millionaires and billionaires and expect programs like food stamps and kid’s insurance to cover the cost of that tax cut. We’re not going to make you clear it with your boss if you want to get birth control under the insurance plan that you’re on. We are not going to redefine rape. We are not going to amend the United States constitution to stop gay people from getting married. We are not going double Guantanamo. We are not eliminating the Department of Energy or the Department of Education or Housing at the federal level. We are not going to spend $2 trillion on the military that the military does not want. We are not scaling back on student loans, because the country’s new plan is that you should borrow money from your parents. We are not vetoing the DREAM Act. We are not self-deporting. We are not letting Detroit go bankrupt. We are not starting a trade war withChinaon Inauguration Day in January. We are not going to have, as a president, a man who once led a mob of friends to run down a scared, gay kid, to hold him down and forcibly cut his hair off with a pair of scissors while that kid cried and screamed for help - and there was no apology, not ever. We are not going to have a Secretary of State John Bolton. We are not bringing Dick Cheney back. We are not going to have a foreign policy shop stocked with architects of the Iraq War. We are not going to do it. We had the chance to do that if we wanted to do that, as a country. And we said no, last night, LOUDLY.
Rachel Maddow, 11-7-12
I was 5 years old when I heard the dreadful news that our President had been shot in a failed assassination attempt. Even at that young age, I felt the impact the event had on the grown-ups around me. On the way to the grocery store, I asked my mother if we could get a get well card and send it to President Reagan. Together, we picked out one and mailed it to the White House. A few weeks later we received an official letter on White House Stationary from the President, thanking me for the well wishes. Our local newspaper ran a story, “Middletown Boy Gets White House Response”, and I was the talk of the town. From that moment on, this 5 year old from southwest Ohio loved President Reagan and thought he could do no wrong.
Fast forward 10 or 12 years, my brother was stationed in Germany while serving in the Army and was being transferred to Ft. Lewis, Washington unable to take any leave to visit his family due to his orders. His wife had given birth to our parent’s first grandchild and they had yet been able to see him. As legend goes (time clouds the memories in my family), someone made a call to our Congressman’s office (then a fairly new John Boehner) and my brother was able to get his orders changed so he could take leave and visit with his family before reporting to Ft. Lewis. In my young impressionable eyes, John Boehner was personally responsible for me getting to see my nephew for the first time, and getting to spend some precious time with my oldest brother after not seeing him for years. Once again, a young Andrew Hounshell was quite impressed by yet another Republican politician showing how much they cared about my family. These guys were great!
What I didn’t know was what was happening to other families around me. If I had been older than 5 years old when I bought that Get Well card, I might have known that it was only five months later, when our President fired over 11,000 PATCO striking Union workers; a move which has been described as starting “America’s downward spiral”; that our nation’s wages would stagnant for the rest of my life. That decision didn’t affect me as a kid, but nearly 30 years later, it is an event that persuaded me to take a deeper look into policy decisions that our elected officials make and ask myself a deeper question. Could it be the dear Republicans I grew up admiring, were not as supportive of the very middle class that I now spend my adult life fighting for?
Memories like mine can mold and shape a person’s voting patterns for a lifetime. Luckily for me, my thirties brought on a time of clarity. There wasn’t one particular event that turned on a light bulb, but rather a combination of many: college, union work, community work, my father relying on the VA for health care, my mother relying on her Social Security to survive, in-laws going without health insurance because they can’t afford it after my father in-law was laid-off from Delphi, having 3 children at one time (the list goes on and on). I realized that through policy, our elected officials do have a huge impact on our livelihood. Through cuts in Social Security, appointments to the NLRB, cuts to the VA, immigration reform (or lack thereof), tax loopholes for corporations, subsidies to oil companies, etc., our middle class has been eroded and we are not taking care of those who can no longer take care of themselves.
The Republicans I loved as a child, and I thought loved me back, were the very ones who were supporting this erosion. How could this be?
The five year old in me feels so betrayed. It turns out, I’ve been caught up in a very real version of the fairytale,” Little Red Riding Hood”. At first glance, Grandma looked sweet and innocent, with her thank you card from the White House and a few weeks of leave for a soldier to visit his family. Now that I am all grown up and have a family of my own to support, I see what big teeth you have, and how you have used them to take a huge bite out of the Middle Class. Like many voters in Ohio’s 8th District and in this country, I see the GOP for what it really is. No disguise is good enough to hide the Big Bad Wolf these days.
Now I dedicate my time to trying to make this world a better place for my children and that includes supporting those who actually support the working class in this country. In 2012, when I looked for that person in the 8th District of Ohio, the ballot was blank. It was then that I decided in 2014 there was going to be a Democratic option for my family, neighbors, coworkers, and community; an option that leads to re-building our Middle Class and a stronger America. No More Boehner. Our Time is Now.