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Democracy For The Southern Adirondack/Tricounty Area
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Tricounty DFA Update: Gibson Town Hall, Washington Co. Women's Banquet, more
Hello Everyone!

In this update for April 24th, 2011;

1. Gibson Town Hall Tuesday
2. Gibson Votes To End Medicare
3. Other Gibson Votes
4. Washington Democratic Women's Luncheon
5. Make a difference with GIbson Watch

1. Gibson Town Hall Tuesday

Republican Rep. Chris GIbson will be holding a public town hall this Tuesday, April 26 at 6:30 pm at the Malta Community Center. The center is next to the Malta Parks and Recreation Department on the corner of Bayberry Drive and Rt, 9 just a bit up the road from the Malta Price Chopper, outside Ballston Spa.

I would urge everyone who can make it to attend this event and come loaded with questions. Republicans have been shocked at the negative response they have been getting at town halls across the country -- the grillings at some of these meetings have been devastating.

If you are going to go, it is very important to get there early enough to get a seat and get inside to ask your questions, and also to keep GIbson and his people from packing the hall.

Unfortunately, there will be some attention seekers outside protesting -- I would urge everyone to ignore these people and get into that room. Don't get distracted. It is not about us and what we feel, but getting GIbson out of office.

We need to educate people about what Gibson represents. Unfortunately, a protest action can only distract from that. Both newspapers and TV have only so much space or time to allot to coverage of this event. All coverage of the action outside will come out of time or space allotted to covering what happens inside. Instead, people need to see images of GIbson ducking, waffling and evading questions, or saying something about what he is really doing that will piss voters off.

What should happen is that Gibson goes in and is confronted by a row of senior citizens who want to know why Gibson is dismantling Medicare, or diary farmers demanding to know if he understands how a nuke plant will affect Washington County farmers, and so on. This is how we put him on the spot, get the word out, and shape perceptions of him.

2. Gibson Votes To End Medicare

The biggest issue at the moment is that Gibson voted to end Medicare.

From the DCCC:
Fact Check: Representative Chris Gibson Voted to End Medicare, Turn it into Voucher Program

In an interview with Capital Tonight’s Liz Benjamin, Representative Chris Gibson (NY-20) continued to mislead voters about his vote to end Medicare and force seniors to pay more for their health care. Despite repeatedly claiming to oppose using vouchers for Medicare, Representative Gibson voted to do just that when he helped pass the Republican budget. Now, caught breaking a campaign pledge, Representative Gibson is resorting to lies and distortions in an attempt to trick his constituents.

FALSE Gibson Claim: “Listen, I’m opposed to vouchers, and I remain opposed to vouchers because we don’t want to privatize this program. We don’t want a situation where our government just sends checks to senior citizens and says ‘you’re on your own, from there’ that’s what a voucher program would do and that’s unacceptable.”

FACT: Ryan Plan Will End Medicare And Turn It Into A Voucher Program. According to the Wall Street Journal, “The plan would essentially end Medicare, which now pays most of the health-care bills for 48 million elderly and disabled Americas, as a program that directly pays those bills.” The New York Times reported that, “The plan would turn Medicare into a voucher program for future generation[.]”[Wall Street Journal, 4/04/11; The New York Times, 4/11/11]

( Maury Thompson of the Post Star specifically asked Gibson about this last September, and Gibson promised to oppose vouchers: )

FALSE Gibson Claim: “If you’re a current senior, no change. If you’re 55 years and older, no change.”

FACT: The Republican-passed budget will force nearly four million seniors to pay an additional $2.2 BILLION for prescription drugs next year alone. Under the Republican budget, 273,223 New York seniors will pay $153 million more for prescription drugs next year alone. [DPCC, 4/21/11]

FALSE Gibson Claim: “If you’re 54 years and younger, what we’re talking about doing is giving future seniors the same options that members of Congress have.”

FACT: Under The Republican Plan Seniors Will Pay 68% Of Their Health Care Costs While Members Of Congress Only Pay 28%. In an April 2011 open letter to the House, Congressman Paul Tonko wrote, “If this plan extended the same kind of health care options that Members of Congress have access to, seniors would be responsible for only 28 percent of their health care premiums. Yet, CBO projects that seniors will have to pay for 68 percent of their premiums within ten years of enactment of the Ryan Voucher Plan. Today, by comparison, the average senior on Medicare pays about 25 percent of their total health care costs. The Republican budget plan’s burden of 68 percent of health care costs on seniors is a far cry from the 28 percent of costs that Members of Congress pay.” [Office of Congressman Paul Tonko, 4/7/11]

FACT: Seniors Will Pay More Under Ryan Plan, Or Face Limits To Coverage

· Wall Street Journal: “The House Republican plan for overhauling Medicare would fundamentally change how the federal government pays for health care, starting a decade from now, likely resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs and greater limits to coverage for many Americans.” [WSJ, 4/6/11]

There was more today from the New York TImes:

3. Other Gibson Votes

However, what the Republicans and GIbson want to do to Medicare is only the beginning. Here are some other choice votes:

Fiscal 2011 Planned Parenthood Funding - Vote Passed (241-185, 1 Present, 5 Not Voting)

Following passage of the 2011 spending bill, the House adopted this enrollment correction resolution that would have blocked funding for Planned Parenthood. The Senate rejected the resolution so it will not be part of the final spending bill.

Rep. Chris Gibson voted YES..

To repeal the Prevention and Public Health Fund - Vote Passed (236-183, 13 Not Voting)

This House bill would eliminate funding for the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which was established by the health care law. Supporters of the bill say there is no accountability to determine where the money is spent. Opponents of the bill say it would defund important prevention programs. The Senate is unlikely to take up the measure.

Rep. Chris Gibson voted YES..

Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011 - Vote Passed (255-172, 5 Not Voting)

The House passed this bill that would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases for the purpose of addressing climate change. A similar measure failed in the Senate earlier in the week.

Rep. Chris Gibson voted YES......send e-mail or see bio

Net Neutrality Disapproval - Vote Passed (240-179, 13 Not Voting)

This resolution would nullify a Federal Communications Commission rule prohibiting broadband Internet service providers from blocking content or traffic. Supporters of the resolution say the FCC does not have the authority to regulate the Internet, while opponents contend the regulations are necessary to provide unfettered access to the Internet. A companion resolution has been introduced in the Senate but its future is unclear.

Rep. Chris Gibson voted YES.

The HAMP Termination Act of 2011 - Vote Passed (252-170, 1 Present, 9 Not Voting)

The House voted to end the Home Affordable Modification Program, a home foreclosure prevention program that uses Troubled Asset Relief Program money to help homeowners modify their mortgages. The Senate is unlikely to take up the bill.

Rep. Chris Gibson voted YES...

The House also voted 184-240 against Rep. Henry Waxman’s (D-Calif.) amendment hat would have put the chamber on record backing the widely held scientific view that global warming is occurring and humans are a major cause. In other words, they voted against the idea climate change is occurring.

4. Washington Democratic Women's Luncheon

You are invited to the Washington County Democratic Women's Luncheon on Friday, May 20th from Noon-2pm at the Cambridge Hotel in Cambridge, NY. Tracey Brooks, President of Family Planning Advocates of New York will be the featured speaker. Brooks was former regional director for Sen. Clinton. $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Men are of course, welcome!

For information call Barbra Kinglsey at 518-677-5921 or Ellen Faber at 518-677-8345., Mail checks made out to WCDC to Ellen Faber, 100 East Main Street, Cambridge, NY 12816

5. Make a difference with GIbson Watch

Again, we really need an active team for If you are going to the town hall, take notes, make recordings or shoot video, which we can ppost! We need to get the stuff above out. If you want to help with Gibson Watch, let me know and I will send you the information you need.

Many thanks everyone, we will be having our usual meeting a week from Wednesday, May 4th, at the Rockhill Bakehouse Cafe at 7pm.


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