Traverse City Record-Eagle

October 6, 2010

Letters at Issue: Elections: 10/06/2010


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A horrendous law

The health care legislation passed this year increases and expands Medicaid and slashes Medicare. By 2019, it cuts Medicare by $86.4 billion — meaning $1,428 less for each elderly patient that year. Baby boomers will face difficulties accessing care that seniors now get. Chief Medicare Actuary Richard Foster said, "Overall national health expenditures under the health-reform act would increase by a total of $311 billion" compared with the amounts that otherwise would be spent from 2010 to 2019.

Dan Benishek in Michigan's First District is the only candidate that has pledged to repeal this horrendous law.

Christa Hill


Shoe-leather campaign

Voters have a clear choice in the 86th District Court race.

Mike Stepka does not accept corporate contributions. Kevin Elsenheimer solicits corporate "donations" and even took money from Meijer after the Acme debacle unraveled.

Stepka has 20 years and 2,200 cases worth of experience in District Court. Elsenheimer is a career politician, voting in lockstep with his party.

Mike Stepka has gone door-to-door the past four months, talking with voters. He represents the old-fashioned, shoe-leather political campaign. Elsenheimer has spent money on slick ads. He represents the modern sound-byte campaign.

I'll take the shoe leather, thanks. Vote Stepka.

Gary S. Powell

Traverse City

'Yes' won't hike taxes

The past several years have been financially tough ones for our Suttons Bay School system. Declining enrollment and funding from the state greatly have challenged our schools.

On Nov. 2, we need to make sure we continue to give our students a chance by voting "yes" on the Suttons Bay bond proposal. A yes vote simply maintains current funding and allows our schools to keep up with the technology and the educational programs our students will need to be successful and compete for the career of their choice.

A yes vote will not increase our taxes.

Frank Smith

Suttons Bay

Has the experience

Having retired after 32 years of service with Grand Traverse County, there were no medical, dental or optical benefits offered. Now, a term-limited legislator worked in Lansing for six years and receives fully paid benefits and we pay for it.

Rep. Kevin Elsenheimer, R-Kewadin, now wants to be the new 86th District Court Judge. The qualifications of a House seat do not match those necessary for a judgeship. Experience is the necessary qualification. He doesn't mention in his mailings that he is a legislator; why not?

Mike Stepka has the experience. Vote Nov. 2.

Thomas Schmuckal

Traverse City

Money helped create jobs

The Michigan GOP states that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act federal funds received by the state of Michigan have been a "massive waste of our tax dollars that has done nothing to turn around our economy." Rep. Dan Scripps, D-Leland, points out that these funds have provided loans to small-business owners, weatherized homes, made college more affordable, diversified our economy and helped create 54,000 jobs in Michigan as of June 2010.

So the GOP candidate would have said "no" to federal help. Our Rep. Dan Scripps said "yes" to helping put people back to work in the 101st District.

William W. Wells


Point out solutions

I hope Jason Gillman has a plan that actually would allow "more people to work and fewer people (to) rely on state assistance." That would be great. However, to simply make the statement is of no help to those forced to go on assistance because they can't find jobs to support their families, or to the state agencies that are trying to ease their burdens.

If Mr. Gillman has any positive ideas to increase the number of decent jobs in our area, then please, tell us. Otherwise, he is simply one more tea party member who is quick to point out problems, but has no solutions.

Kristen Peters

Traverse City

Vote 'yes' on proposals

Traverse City Light & Power still wants to burn our forests, as noted in its recent brochure sent out to ratepayers listing biomass as a baseload generation source.

Our Chamber of Commerce announced its opposition to Proposal 1. Our chamber supports policies the GOP had in place under the Bush administration that created the economic depression we are currently in. The U.S. Chamber was instrumental in helping the GOP defeat a Senate bill that would have reduced outsourcing and end tax breaks for companies who send jobs offshore.

Enough said. Vote "yes" for Proposal 2 and especially for Proposal 1.

Peggy Fry

Traverse City

More good news

If you're like me, a fan of higher taxes, a bankrupted county, a bankrupted state, high unemployment, closing businesses, foreclosures, elimination of personal and property rights plus ... personal choices, have I got good news for you.

Michigan gained statehood in 1837 along with a never-ending supply of ingenious crafty scheming politicians coming up with endless supplies of terrific ideas to do just that.

Now here's more good news: We have another opportunity to keep the good times rolling and this progress going.

Vote early and vote often, but most importantly ... keep voting Democrat.

What possibly could go wrong?

Mary Bowen


Unique qualifications

It should be noted by the voters in Leelanau County that probate court judge candidate Marian Kromkowski is the only candidate who has had extensive experience in mediation. And in fact, she is the first attorney in northern Michigan to be trained in Domestic Relations Mediation — and to offer such services.

Ms. Kromkowski successfully had introduced collaborative divorce practice in our area and serves on the board of Collaborative Practice Institute of Michigan.

We urge thoughtful voters to consider Marian Kromkowski's unique qualifications for this most sensitive of judicial positions.

Shirley and Tom Wall

Suttons Bay

Meets the criteria

What should we look for in a District Court Judge?

1) Unquestioned integrity of their personal and professional life and the avoidance of any potential conflicts of interest in their campaigns.

2) Useful experience in court and a broad-based legal background.

3) A willingness to introduce innovative procedures that protect the public, punish and rehabilitate lawbreakers and save taxpayers money.

In the race for 86th District Court Judge, Mike Stepka meets all three criteria and his opponent meets none. That makes the choice easy. Vote for Mike Stepka on Nov. 2.

Marge Johnson

Suttons Bay