Opinion: Canton resident wants to know who Stefanik really represents
Friday, December 1, 2017 - 7:58 am

To the Editor:

I know that our Congressman, Elise Stefanik, is gearing up for her rerun for her 21st District Congressional Seat. It’s in the air—that is, in the airmail we receive, that it’s happening.

Recently, I received her large glossy pamphlet asking seniors whether we “are ready for Medicare open enrollment?” While it’s kind to gently remind forgetful old coots like me, I really think this letter served a different purpose: With a large picture of our smiling young representative, there were also snapshots of Stefanik with old folks even, wait for it, at a Town Hall --with the Alzheimer’s Association of Queensbury! Now I have become increasingly cynical given my own advanced age and infirmities. But I do recognize miracles! Stefanik, avoiding town halls like the plague since he who shall not be named was elected president, has finally materialized, at least before her septuagenarian constituents!

Yet, it’s the height of hypocrisy that what she is encouraging me to enroll in was on the chopping block in the GOP’s American Take Away your Healthcare Act. Stefanik claimed she was agonizing over it to the bitter end, but actually worked hard behind the scenes to cut over 700 B as in billion dollars from Medicare. Elderly care was cut big time in the bill’s fine print with: (1) a nice tax cut of a payroll surcharge for upper income earners that would have cut $117 billion in funding. That would have bankrupted Medicare by 2025! Grandpa could enroll all he wanted, but with no cash in the fund, why bother. The wealthiest, however, got yet another nice little tax break! (2) Elise’s GOP also proposed limiting per capita growth of Medicaid (for the poor) leading to another $ 44 billion in cuts.

So which is it Stefanik---Are you for Medicare and Medicaid for the elderly or for big tax breaks for your wealthy friends? Who do you really represent?

As far as I can see, it’s not us. Oh, and by the way, what percentage of your donors actually live in the 21st district? Wouldn’t it be a nice if you donated that 800K you’ve raised for your campaign to our needy area hospitals? Please stop sending me glossy campaign pamphlets about a program you have tried so hard to weaken if not destroy?

Mark MacWilliams