By Robert E. Macdonald
Mayor of Lewiston
Before getting to this week’s column, I have some news that should make Maine’s struggling taxpayers happy. While at the fish counter of a local grocery store, I was informed by the clerk waiting on me that lobster could no longer be purchased using an EBT card. A small victory, but a victory, none the less.
In last week’s column, I wrote about the obstacles and philosophies put forth by Maine’s progressive Democrats and their allies to prevent comprehensive welfare reform. This week, we will write about who in Maine’s Congressional Delegation (Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Representatives Michael Michaud and Shellie Pingree) has stepped up to the plate and who has ignored Lewiston’s plea for help.
Since being elected, Senator Angus King and his staff have been in constant touch with the mayor’s office. Shortly after being elected, Senator King came to Lewiston City Hall, along with his staff, and spent approximately two hours discussing with city administration the problems occurring in Lewiston. He was especially concerned about the fiscal burden asylum seekers were placing on Lewiston.
Since our initial meeting, I have been in constant touch with the Senator and his staff. They have kept Lewiston officials updated on immigration reform. I feel I have to thank Senator King for his continued support of Lewiston.
Then there is Senator Susan Collins. She has done yeoman’s work addressing Lewiston’s many problems. Most recently, she has aggressively addressed Maine’s asylum seeker problems. Her competent Lewiston staff has proven to be very valuable in finding solutions to Lewiston’s problems.
Next we have our two U.S. Representatives, Michael Michaud and Shellie Pingree. Recently, I sent out four letters, one to each of our Congressional delegation, asking for help in dealing with our asylum-seeker problem. Senators King and Collins have taken up our cause, while Representatives Michaud and Pingree remain silent on this issue. Perhaps this should not be surprising, when you look at the reaction of our Maine progressive liberals and their allies on this issue.
Lastly, if you have any doubts which side of the immigration issue our two Democratic representatives are on, I’ll leave you with the words of one of their congressional colleagues, Rep. Raul Grigalva (D-Arizona): “It is time for President Obama to step up and do everything within his power to ease the plight of the men, women and children suffering from our broken immigration system.”
When it comes to problems facing taxpayers and the problems facing future Democratic illegal immigrant voters, the voters win hands down every time.
This Friday is July 4th, when we celebrate the 238th birthday of our great country. n the early 1600s, groups of English settlers came to this new land in search of religious freedom, wealth and adventure. Early on in Jamestown, Virginia, Captain John Smith put an end to the laziness of aristocratic dandies by requiring them to work in order to eat.
As the original colonies grew, something began to take shape: “upward mobility.” Unlike England, where nobility brought one fame, wealth and stature, here hard work by the lowest-born person could elevate an individual to fame, fortune and respectability.
The French and Indian War revealed the myth of a superior British Army. This, combined with other factors, led to a revolution and our independence.
Great men from throughout the colonies came together in Philadelphia, creating a new country along with a new form of government, which today still remains the envy of the world.
Last week a Medal of Honor recipient, retired Marine Corporal Kyle Carpenter, responded to a question put to him by David Letterman, which echoed other MOH recipients: The medal belonged to his squad that had done battle that day.
He informed Letterman that the long, proud history of the Marine Corps is drilled into each individual Marine, starting at boot camp. Marines are expected to meet or exceed the standards set by those whose footsteps they follow. Results are achieved by working together (Gung Ho).
Today, very few people have even a limited knowledge of our great country’s history. Pride in a country is created through the knowledge of its history.
Happy 238th birthday, America.