(posted to Stein for Congress on 8/30/2010)
Dear Candidate for Congress:
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Question 29. What do you see as our role in the Middle East in five years?
First, may I say, you (CitizenAction), left room to expand answers concerning the Pentagon, but not about Unions and Card Check. I answered the yes and no questions anyway, proving once again to (Congresman LoBiondo) that he has nothing to fear by answering questionnaires- if this years election opponent (me)- can so do so without breaking a sweat. If anyone in Washington D.C. could/should be responsive it's him! He's near retirement (due the math, born in 46, 16 years in office) we love him up here in Jersey (huge 60+ margins every two years), and he has a massive war chest (to counter any criticism by desperate opponents). A wins a win, even if it's 51% to 49%, do what's right, take a few lumps....and stop voting with the party that's up in the polls. You wind up running back to the Republican side anyway, and look foolish doing so. I speak of Iraq and Cap and Trade; two issues my opponent has waffled on, and come to mind, when I'm asked above about the Middle East.
Our role in the Middle East in 5 years? At a minimum, we'll still be in Afghanistan, and we'll still have a presence in Iraq as well, because Shiites and the Sunnis minority will never really get along. I wish I knew the distinction before I took George W. at his word. He should have known, or he should have asked the senior Bush. As a Republican up till March, 2010, I admit, I supported the war. It's doubtful now, we should have ever invaded, but once we did, it was necessary to finish the job- something my Republican opponent wasn't prepared to do.... I guess? Was he against the 2007 troop surge? Tough to divine, he missed the vote, but divine it I did. I researched and found the article stating which way he said he'd have voted. It was effectively covered up- obfuscated- side stepped-IT WAS MASTERFULLY AVOIDED- in a two man debate back in 2008 when the Democrat, Dave Kurkowski asked about the missed vote. LoBiondo would have voted no, against the troop surge. I found the smoking gun- it's reprinted on my web site!
In retrospect, massive sanctions against Iran,and more resources targeted against Bin Laden,following 9/11 might have been the way to go. One thing is certain today- Iran, the big winner in all this- won't rest until it brings the entire Middle East down with it. We should have begun licensing new nuclear power electric generating power plants, 3 years ago, when gas hit $4 a gallon. Even if the lead time for new plants is years, it would have sent the MESSAGE to the world- we're prepared to break the dependence on unreliable Middle Eastern oil. Plus it has the side benefit of having no smoke stack emissions.
But enacting Cap and Trade as a way to get us off oil (and as a fix for global warming)!?!? That's what my opponent first proposed doing! How does raising taxes unilaterally on U.S. businesses do that? That's a non-starter- and that, plus his fudge on the Iraq troop surge, are two examples how Frank LoBiondo gets it all mixed up when he tries, key word "tries" being bi-partisan. And it's the reasons this particular Congressman is unlikely to make the right decisions on Afghanistan if he's sent back for a 9th term- 3 more- than the 6 he promised back in 1994..