In President Obama, we have a commander-in-chief who understands that our commitment to our veterans doesn't end when they return home.
The country got a glimpse at who Mitt Romney really is when a video recently leaked showing him dismissing 47 percent of Americans as victims who depend on government handouts. At a Gotta Vote bus tour stop at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, Dana Wachs, who's running for a seat in the state assembly, told this story of what Romney's comments meant to a man he met knocking on doors:
"The other day, I was campaigning in my district, and I was going through walk sheets, and I got a couple blocks mixed up—should've gone to the left, but I went to the right and walked up, knocked on the door. Then I turned around and there were pretty conservative bumper stickers on the car, and there were pretty conservative flags flying on the flagpole. I thought, my goodness, I'm going to be in there for a long time.
"And the door opened, and I said, 'I'm Dana Wachs, and I'm a Democrat running for the state assembly.' And this guy wheeled up to the door in a wheelchair, and he put his hand out, and he said, 'You're a Democrat?' I said yeah. He said, 'I've never voted for a Democrat, but I was wounded in the war, and I'm voting for one now.'"
If you don't want a president who's so quick to dismiss our combat troops and disabled veterans as "victims," then you gotta vote.
The Gotta Vote bus tour rolled into Green Bay, Wisconsin, this morning with a special guest: Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, son of Vice President Biden. With 27 days left till Election Day, Biden joined union members, students, retirees, and volunteers to stand up against a Republican ticket that wants to divide America.
"Behind me are those 47 percent that Romney talked about," says Biden. "Let me tell you something. The disabled vet I met in Marshalltown, Iowa, the disabled vets in this district, they don't view themselves as victims. They would return to their unit if they could. My grandmother, she didn't view herself as entitled to anything. She paid into the system and she earned her Medicare and Social Security. Moms, dads, working two, three, four jobs to put dinner on the table and provide for their families? They don't view themselves as irresponsible. They are responsible. They are the middle class."
President Obama and Vice President Biden get that, he says. They're working to build the economy from the middle class out, creating more than 5.2 million jobs and helping put our veterans to work when they come home. That's something that hits home for Biden, a member of the Delaware National Guard who served his country in Iraq. He says that when it comes to taking care of his fellow veterans, Ryan and the Democratic candidates have a fundamentally different view—and the proof is in the budget.
"My father always said, don't tell me your priorities," says Biden. "Show me your budget, and I'll tell you what your priorities are. Well, let's look at Mr. Ryan's budget. If you believe his math, he would cut 20 percent from the VA. That would amount to an $11 billion cut that would've gone to health care for veterans—22 million veterans nationally.
"We have been a generation at war for a decade. What is Mr. Ryan's priority? In 2002 and 2003, while Americans were going off to war, he was voting for a tax break for the wealthiest Americans that no one wanted or needed that blew up our budget. In 2012, he wants to do the very same thing. He has a fundamentally different set of values than my father and the President have. He's more concerned with giving the .1 percent a tax break than he is looking out for those of us who have served in Iraq and and are veterans."
If you'd rather take care of our veterans than give millionaires and billionaires another tax cut, then you gotta vote. You can still register to vote in Wisconsin and in many states across the country. Find everything you need to know about voting at www.gottavote.com.