Article Comment 

Voice of the people: Billy Wilemon, Jr.




Nunnelee does not represent people of Mississippi 


This is in response to the letter (editorial, advertisement?) from Hon. Alan Nunnelee published in another local newspaper on 12/16/12.  


The title is "Obama won't offer a fair 'cliff' plan." Rep. Nunnelee states "I want to cut spending and stop the tax hike." And "These cuts must be real and specific, not a vague promise to look at cutting spending somewhere down the road."  


Rep. Nunnelee, being customarily vague himself, has not said what he wishes to cut. But as he voted for the Ryan budget in March, we can guess. HCR 112 would eventually privatize Medicare, make the Bush tax cuts permanent, and cut domestic spending. That same week, he voted against a budget plan that would end the Bush tax cuts for millionaires, use the savings for domestic programs, and retain traditional Medicare.  


Mississippi is not exactly crawling with millionaires, and according to The Tax Foundation, Mississippi is third highest on the list of states receiving more federal funds than it takes in revenue. We receive $1.84 for every dollar sent to Washington in taxes. Those domestic programs are needed for our citizens and for our economy. By the way, eight of the top nine states are Red states. (No. 1 is Washington, DC, which I expect helps fund his House of Representatives.) So why Mississippi continues to elect Republicans is beyond me. They do not represent our best economic interests.  


Rep. Nunnelee's voting record shows he cares more about corporate profits and protecting tax cuts for his wealthy contributors than he does about improving the economy of  


Mississippi or helping out his constituents. The lesson here is to watch how a politician votes rather than to listen to what one says.  


In addition, Rep. Nunnelee subscribes to attacking Social Security, such as raising the eligibility age, reducing benefits, and privatization. In fact, as Social Security is not part of the general fund, this safety net program does not contribute to deficit spending. So it need not be a part of the fiscal "cliff" conversation at all.  


Rep. Nunnelee follows the party line and talks about "entitlement" programs.  


Mississippians are "entitled" to social security and Medicare because we pay into those programs. I do not consider Big Oil, the most profitable corporations ever, to be "entitled" to billions in tax breaks they currently receive. I do not consider the military industrial complex to be "entitled" to billions of dollars in no-bid contracts they have received for the past 12 years. I do not consider Wall Street to be "entitled" to billions in bailouts.  


So I am unclear as to Rep. Nunnelee's definition of "entitlements." But then, I do not have a lobbyist. All I have are the press to ask the difficult questions, as it did before Kardashians roamed the earth and before "The Voice" consumed the American public. And in my view, the press has let us down.  


And yes, in November the American people did again choose a divided government. But the Republican majority in the House dropped from 49 to 33. And the Democratic majority in the Senate increased to 10 from six. And one of these days the people of Mississippi may realize that Hon. Nunnelee does not really represent us.  


Billy Wilemon, Jr.  





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