Tuesday, September 30, 2008

IN-06: Welsh and Pence Share Opposition, but For Very Different Reasons

I have by no means tried to hide my support for bailout legislation, as was made clear by my chastisement of Rep. Mike Pence earlier today. While I regret the situation we are currently in and place much of the blame at the feet of republicans, I supported today's bill because I felt and still feel that inaction comes at too high a price. This bill was far from perfect-- that I think we can all agree on. But had it been adopted, I feel confident in saying that Wall Street would have avoided such a colossal plunge today, and ultimately would have been spared another week of fiscal collapse. And for me that would have been worth it.

This being said, I think its important to point out the very real differences in today's nay votes, especially along party lines. I called out Mike Pence because his rationale for voting against the bill was absurd-- amounting to yet more tax breaks for big business all in the name of free-market economics. His hollow position was  a familiar one today, and as a result a majority of republicans voted against the bailout. This defense doesn't ring true for democrats though. While I may have supported the bill today, I understand completely why many democrats did not. In a soon to be released op-ed piece, IN-06 district challenger Barry Welsh explains the dichotomy of nay votes perfectly:
This bailout as proposed is the equivalent of taking out a new credit card and filling it with the debt of old credit cards. That doesn't work for people and it doesn't work for governments. I would have voted against the bill as it stood but for different reasons than those of my opponent. Congressman Mike Pence, under his words "limited government", opposes more regulations on Wall Street and wants more tax breaks for the wealthy, and that is why he voted no. I believe we need stricter regulations and a tax break for the 95% of us who are not wealthy, and that is why I would have voted no. There were few explanations as to where the original money went, and where the proposed 700 billion dollars in replacement funds would be directed. All expenditures would be at the Treasury Secretary's discretion, and that is not a good enough explanation of who will benefit for me, or the American people.
To read the op-ed in its entirety check out Welsh's post over at Blue Indiana.

No comments: