Letter: Misguided allegiance
It is my belief that politicians elected to Congress pledge allegiance to our flag and to our country, not allegiance to a man named Grover Norquist, who is holding bags of money for their election campaigns. The same Grover Norquist involved in the Abramoff Indian lobbying scandal. He is now running the Republican campaign like a Mafia Don!
Norquist drafted a pledge that the signers would “never, under any circumstances, vote to rise taxes on anyone.” Norquist brags that 279 members of Congress have signed this pledge to him. In return, he funds their campaigns. Jeb Bush finally withdrew his pledge and declared it “outsourcing your principles and convictions to people.” Romney, Ryan and Brown have all signed the pledge to Norquist.
CBS’ Steve Croft interviewed Norquist on “60 Minutes” on Nov. 20, 2011 and it was recently rebroadcast in August. Norquist showed Croft charts of how Republicans were voting and charts of those who had broken the pledge and lost the next election.
Kroft: “But you make it pretty clear. If someone breaks the pledge, you’re gonna do everything you can to get rid of them.”
Norquist: “To educate the voters that they raise taxes. And again, we educate people ...
Kroft: “To defeat them.”
Norquist: “To encourage them to go into another line of work, like shoplifting or bank robbing, where they have to do their own stealing.”
Kroft: “You’ve got them by the short hairs.”
CBS summed it up nicely: “If nothing else, it is a brilliant bare-knuckle political strategy with some of the characteristics of a protection racket.”
Both Vice President Biden and Elizabeth Warren brought up the pledge during their debates. Their opponents shrugged it off. Is this legal? To buy the vote of a congressman by providing unlimited funds for their campaign (Every candidate’s dream come true?). Even Democrats have been forced to sign the pledge to protect their seat in the House! Help! Please!
DOLORES E. HOFF