Printed letters, September 13, 2012

I do not understand the whole mindset that would make abortion a deciding factor in our presidential election.

We are $16 trillion in debt and adding over $1 trillion a year. The government hasn’t passed a budget for going on four years (though one party had control of both the executive and legislative branches for two of those years).

Our businesses are stagnant, at least in part due to uncertainty surrounding taxes and health care costs. The real unemployment/underemployment rate is around 25 percent. College graduates are moving back home because they cannot find suitable employment.

Do you think the average middle- class family, where the parents both worked but now one is unemployed and they’re struggling to keep their house, is more concerned about abortion than the economy?

Do you think the college graduate who had to move home and is working a low-paying job to repay student loans is more concerned about abortion than the underemployment rate?

Do you think that the “empty nesters” who have been working hard to provide themselves with a comfortable retirement and now have their son or daughter living back home are more worried about abortion than the economy?

As any marginally educated person knows, no one person in America can change a law, not even the president. When our country is economically stable, businesses are growing and unemployment is under control, then maybe we can have a presidential election based on abortion issues. Right now we have bigger fish to fry.


Grand Junction

Hold Delta commissioners 
accountable on chicken farm

Earlier this summer, the Delta County commissioners considered an application for a 15,000 chicken confinement operation in a rural neighborhood near Hotchkiss. The area planning committee, the county professional planning staff and an abundance of expert public testimony regarding public health risks posed by the operation all recommended against this operation.

Following public hearings, the commissioners held private meetings with the applicants and suddenly their application was miraculously approved! This irrational and capricious decision has the appearance of corruption and made the entire hearing process a farce.

The confinement operation immediately produced large clouds of manure dust, dander and feathers that were exhausted from the building and distributed to neighbors by prevailing winds. At least 10 nearby residents quickly developed asthma and pulmonary distress, and one of the few remaining large-animal veterinary practices in the county has had to curtail operations due to the pollution. Runoff from this facility will carry disease organisms into creeks and irrigation water used downstream by produce growers and the town of Hotchkiss.

Visit the website of a nonprofit group for compatible land use,, to see video of the filthy air from this operation. Residents had no recourse but to sue the county, and a judge has ruled that the commissioners failed to consider evidence in the record of incompatibility with the neighborhood, damage to property values and risks to public health.

This group is fighting for all of us who want the county commissioners to make informed decisions based upon evidence and facts instead of Libertarian ideology.




Ryan budget is unfair 
to poor, vulnerable people

When Paul Ryan introduced his controversial budget last year, I was appalled. The plan not only called for radical cuts to many services important to middle-class Coloradans, but it planned to raise taxes on our already over-burdened middle class as multimillionaires receive huge new tax breaks.

As the Ryan budget was being discussed in the House of Representatives, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said the budget fails to meet certain “moral criteria” by disproportionately cutting programs that “serve the poor and vulnerable people.”

Some 60 Catholic social justice leaders released this statement: “This budget is morally indefensible and betrays Catholic principles of solidarity, just taxation, and a commitment to the common good. A budget that turns its back on the hungry, the elderly, and the sick while giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest few can’t be justified in Christian terms.”

Despite this, 3rd District Rep. Scott Tipton helped push the bill through the House. Fortunately, the bill failed in the Senate. However, with Ryan’s addition to the Romney ticket, a new version of the Ryan budget has a new life.

Along with tax hikes for the middle-class, the Ryan budget would lead to the end of Medicare as we know it. In order to cover tax breaks for millionaires, the plan would cut spending for Pell scholarships and veterans’ services and reduce investments in clean energy and medical research. As for jobs, Romney’s plan would cost the U.S. more than 1 million jobs.

How can Scott Tipton support such a plan?

Sal Pace opposes the Ryan budget and the radical ideas it represents. He believes in protecting Medicare and would fight for an all-of-the-above approach to cutting the deficit.

The choice is clear. On Nov. 6, I will vote for Sal Pace for Congress.


Grand Junction


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