2009-08-01 / Editorials & Letters

A Simple Pledge

A reader brought this pledge to our attention. "Let Freedom Ring," a non-profit, grassroots organization supporting Constitutional government, economic freedom and traditional values, is asking all 535 members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U. S. Senate to sign the simple pledge below. Multiple copies of the pledge have been sent to all Members by fax, email, regular mail or personal visitation. Here's what the group calls its Responsible Healthcare Reform Pledge:

I, , pledge to my constituents and to the American people that I will not vote to enact any healthcare reform package that:

1) I have not read, personally, in its entirety; and,

2) Has not been available, in its entirety, to the American people on the Internet for at least 72 hours, so that they can read it too.

That's all it is. Let Freedom Ring isn't seeking any specific policy commitments, just a pledge that the Member will read the entire bill before voting for it and that we have access to the entire bill via the Internet for at least 72 hours (three days) before Members vote on it.

Who wouldn't sign a pledge that they will at least read the entire bill before supporting it and that we all have at least 72 hours to read it ourselves before our representatives vote on it? A majority of Congress and every Democrat Member, that's who! So far, just 95 members have signed the pledge. Ohio representatives agreeing to read the bill before voting for it and giving us 72 hours to read it before they vote are Rep. Steve Austria, who represents our Fairfield and Perry county readers; Rep. Patrick Tiberi, who represents the western portion of Licking County; Rep. John Boehner, Rep. Jim Jordan and Rep. Bob Latta.

So Rep. Zack Space, who recently voted to destroy Ohio's economy with cap and tax, isn't willing to read any health-care reform bill before voting for it nor will he give us an opportunity to read it before the vote. Space voted "yes" on cap and tax just 16 hours after a massive rewrite of the bill was filed during the dead of night. If cap and tax and now health-care reform are such good deals for us, why are so many Members unwilling to commit to even reading the bill and letting us read it before they vote. It sounds like the old pig in a poke story.

These issues are critical to our future. We're not talking about a bill setting up the National Cranberry Commission or naming some highway or building. We need to send a strong message to our representatives in Washington that we expect them to read all life-changing legislation and to give us an opportunity to review the final proposed bill before they vote. Otherwise, how can they possibly represent our interests. That doesn't seem too much to ask, but 440 of our representatives apparently don't agree. It looks like we need to clean house in Washington.

Return to top