Letter to the Editor: Objectively Examine the Records

We have seen on TV an ad which is promoting Wisconsin’s Senator Johnson by criticizing Russ Feingold, his opponent in the upcoming election. The ad suggests a close relationship between Feingold and President Obama and it goes on to show persons involved in acts of terror and gun violence for the purpose of planting in the minds of viewers the idea that Feingold and the president are weak in combating terror. To add a finishing touch, the ad points out that Feingold was the only senator to vote against the Patriot Act.

The writer of a folksy letter that appeared in the Pulse issue of April 29 [“Anyone Notice Two Russell Feingolds?” by JJ Gallagher] repeated pretty much the Johnson ad and again topped it off with the statement about the Patriot Act. The act was passed in 2001, 45 days after 9/11. It was 342 pages long and many members of congress admitted to not have reading the bill in its entirety. Feingold, before passage of the bill, gave a speech to the Senate in which he pointed out that under the bill there would be no limits on the government’s power to sneak and peek, to collect information about anything and anyone without a proper warrant from a judge. After the bill’s passage many members of Congress, including Republicans, were appalled at what was occurring, such as snooping into thousands of Verizon phone records. Feingold’s foresight and courage made him an exemplary senator and the people of Wisconsin thought so; he was elected to three terms. Feingold’s replacement, however, has been a failure who was elected as a knee-jerk reaction to an ineffective Congress, an ineffectiveness that began with a vow from his own party leadership to oppose every initiative of the new president.

Included in Johnson’s record are a lawsuit against Obamacare which members of his own party called frivolous and a political stunt, voting against bills to help veterans with health care and voting against a bill to help students refinance loans, an attempt to derail an investigation into the private schools voucher program, a suggestion to abolish the Department of Education, skipping a Senate vote to require background checks for gun purchases (the bill lost by a few votes) and using a phony ad showing Obama shaking hands with Iran’s president in order to criticize the Iran nuclear agreement. Obama has never met Iran’s president.

If voters examine objectively the records of the candidates both in and out of office, Feingold will be returned to the senate.


George Krall

La Crosse, Wis.

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