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Letters

Republicans’ negativity backfires on electorate

Since President Obama won a convincing majority of votes and re-election, I have heard a steady stream of excuses from Republicans.

Republicans have lost the popular vote in five of the last six presidential elections. Obama won the popular vote, the Electoral College, won every claimed home state of the Republican challengers and took every swing state but one. Democrats also gained seats in both the House and Senate.

Republicans have severely underestimated those of us who have such great admiration for this president. People like myself and millions of others have been taking all these mean-spirited, downright nasty personal remarks on Obama’s character as personal attacks on all of us.

Due to that and all the not-so-secret efforts by Republicans to disenfranchise so many others, I am convinced that all these efforts had the cumulative effect just the opposite of the intended result. I can’t ever recall any election in my lifetime from which I got so much personal satisfaction from the result. I know many others feel the same.

So I offer a word of advice that Republicans may choose to ignore at their party’s own peril. When you have policy differences with Obama, be sure it’s because of policy and not because of something uglier. Try debating the facts a little more often. Quit making so many ridiculous things up. If you don’t change your approach, the next election is going to be very brutal for you. After all, we are a “center left majority.”

DAVID WILLIAMS Garrett

Not all veterans’ VA experience good

I was happy to read the Dec. 9 letter from Nancy Parker about the great services at the VA Hospital. I think another experience needs to be told also.

My husband went to the VA emergency room once and only once. The experience was horrible. He was in excruciating pain. First it was hard to understand the doctor. Blood and other tests were taken; they told my husband when results came in he would get a call. I took him straight to Lutheran Hospital.

A week later the VA called to come in; the tests were abnormal. Anyone who has had kidney stones knows how painful they are.

Our veterans need better service than this. My husband faithfully served 20 years in the Air Force. Later he contracted cancer we believe was from Agent Orange while serving in Vietnam, but we didn’t declare any action for it.

I hope and pray services will improve at the VA Hospital. Our veterans deserve it.

DELORES ZELT Fort Wayne

Counties being shortchanged in name of state’s surplus

I am writing to address a problem that could affect every citizen in Indiana.

Our state is sitting on a large surplus. But counties have had to endure more unfunded mandates and the curtailing of certain operations to make the state look good.

Our sheriff’s departments have had to endure new unfunded mandates that may cause a decline in public safety. The infrastructure at the county level is now showing the wear and tear that is going to snowball shortly unless our citizens see the picture unfolding in front of them. This will first become evident in less-populated counties.

We have been led to believe that the state is in great shape, but the state is made up of counties, and the counties are being overstressed because of the fiscal problems put on them by the state. The state is not as financially sound as we have been led to believe. A large portion of any surplus should be returned to the counties before declining infrastructure jeopardizes our citizens’ safety.

I am trying to get the legislature to propose a bill that any excess surplus be returned to the counties before any other allocations are dispersed.

I am not affiliated with any organization or political party. My problem is that I have to play politics to be heard at the Statehouse. I am visiting as many Indiana counties as possible trying to get support with the message to our citizens that they have the power to make those at the state level understand our counties deserve better.

JAMES M. CARTER Tell City

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