Dear Mr. Griffith:
I read with interest Dan Casey’s column in today’s Roanoke Times. It seems Mr. Casey thinks you loaded the questions in your recent constituent survey. Though I am one of your constituents, I did not receive this survey in the mail. However, assuming that you might indeed be interested in your constituents’ views, I would like to respond to the questions listed in Mr. Casey’s column today.
(1) I am against a balanced budget amendment, which would severely limit the ability of the government to respond to needs, especially emergency needs like in the case of relief for victims of Hurricane Sandy’s damage.
(2) I oppose oil exploration and drilling off Virginia’s shore due to the potential damage from a spill. Virginia is subject to hurricanes and we know what happened with BP in the Gulf and the unexpected damage from Hurricane Sandy.
(3) I oppose cutting benefits to recipients of Social Security and Medicare, but I would raise the income tax cap to increase Social Security’s long-term solvency. Currently, wages over $106,800 are exempted from Social Security payroll taxes. The wealthy should pay more.
(4) I support the Dream Act. Immigration reform, IMO, should also include revising the law making children of illegals American citizens. I understand that we are currently spending more on border security than on all other federal policing activities combined.
(5) I support providing the EPA with strong regulatory powers to protect citizen health from air and water pollution. I support increasing the regulation of greenhouse gases and smokestack pollution from coal-powered plants.
(6) I oppose another mid-East war. Iran has not attacked nor does it threaten us. I support an immediate end to the war in Afghanistan and a reduction of American military bases overseas, which should go a long way to reducing the military budget and hence the federal budget deficit.
(7) I support new laws to restrict private citizen ownership of military weapons such as assault rifles and high capacity ammunition clips. I support closing the gun hole loophole on criminal background checks for persons purchasing firearms.
I am sure that many of your constituents share my views.
I think Mr. Casey was quite right that the wording of the survey that others received was quite biased to produce responses that aligned with the views of right-wing extremists. Perhaps you need to hire a reputable pollster to supervise your next survey.