In the past, I like many other Republicans supported Rep. Glenn Thompson. However, following a private meeting with Thompson on Aug. 4, and a review of his legislative actions, I now believe we need a Republican challenger to take him on.
Let’s begin with Thompson and Medicare.
As a fiscal conservative, I feel the time has come to do something about the escalating cost of Medicare. However, I vehemently oppose actions, like those supported by Thompson, that use Medicare as a slush fund to provide money for other programs.
To illustrate my point, consider Thompson’s past actions:
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1. He voted for the Trade Act of 2015 that included funding, via the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, to help those displaced as a result of a trade deal. It sounds like a good idea until you find out that some $170 million in funding will come from Medicare.
2. He supported cutting billions from Medicare to restore a 1 percent cut to military pension increases for vets 62 or younger. Thompson admitted the offset in a phone conversation with his constituents last year when he said the cuts were to Medicare providers, not Medicare recipients. What he failed to recognize is that cuts to doctor reimbursements reduce access to care, which will affect Medicare recipients.
What’s worse, Republicans (including Thompson) never mentioned the Medicare offsets when discussing either the TAA or pension increases. We deserve all relevant facts.