Sarasota News Leader

11/02/2012

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Sarasota News Leader November 2, 2012 OPINION BUCHANAN, PILON HAVE NOT REPRESENTED THEIR CONSTITUENTS WELL LETTERS TO THE EDITOR To the editor: The best indicator of what an incumbent po- litical candidate will do is not what that can- didate says, but how he has voted. Two incumbents who have records are U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Longboat Key — who is running for re-election — and state Rep. Ray Pilon, R-Sarasota, who is asking for a return to his District 72 seat in the Florida Legislature, where he has a two-year record. We know much about Buchanan's record. He has been in the news regularly, fighting charges of violations of campaign finance law as well as lawsuits filed by former business partners alleging fraud. I'm sure he has spent some of the time we pay him for defending himself against those charges. However, it is his voting record and how he campaigns that get my attention. Buchanan has followed the Tea Party in cast- ing nearly all his votes. His main goal was to defeat the president, not represent us. The Re- publicans also voted down Obama's jobs bill, which would have provided veterans return- ing from Iraq and Afghanistan with job and training opportunities. Buchanan also refused to debate his oppo- nent, Keith Fitzgerald, a highly respected New College professor, at a press-covered luncheon at Sarasota Tiger Bay Club, a known conser- vative political organization. If you want the Tea Party in charge, vote for Buchanan. Ray Pilon, in his two years in Tallahassee, vot- ed for several bills to suppress the votes of minorities, seniors and students; bills placing 11 amendments to the Florida Constitution on this year's ballot — all of them rejected by the non-partisan League of Women Voters; and re- quiring drug testing of everyone seeking finan- cial aid and randomly of all state employees, both without showing any cause or reason. He also voted for a reduction in payment of unemployment benefits from 26 to 20 weeks. This vote was cast as "60 Minutes" aired a segment showing children in Sanford, FL, liv- ing in a truck while their widowed and unem- ployed father looked for work. He also par- ticipated in numerous attempts by Gov. Scott and the Legislature to gain more control over the court system. Liz Alpert, a smart, determined candidate who worked her way through college and law school while raising three children, is oppos- ing Pilon. She will represent us. We need representatives who will fight for leg- islation in our best interest, not vote to tag along with the Tea Party and their sugar daddy billionaires. Art Ginsburg Sarasota Page 72

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