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Editor, Casa Grande Dispatch:

Do you value your Social Security benefits? The availability of unemployment insurance should you find yourself out of a job? Thank FDR, a Democrat. Do you value Medicare or Medicaid? Thank LBJ, a Democrat.

Now ask yourself: Who, for decades, has campaigned to eliminate, reduce or privatize these programs? Republicans and Libertarians. Right now, behind closed doors, Mitt Romney is rallying Republicans to support his TRUST Act, which aims to gut Social Security benefits. The Republican response to soaring deficits is to cut benefits to seniors, children and the disabled. Meanwhile, Republicans are the source of ballooning debt and deficits.

Trump’s 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act led to reforms in corporate and personal taxes that significantly impacted revenue (negatively) while benefiting the ultra-rich. George W. Bush’s 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, which promised to spur economic growth and “pay for themselves,” instead only escalated income and wealth inequality and reduced federal revenues by $1.8 trillion between 2002 and 2009 while increasing the debt. When Republicans cut taxes, it benefits the 1%, not working people or retirees.

Now think back over the decades and try to itemize the ways in which Republicans have made your life easier or more successful (assuming you are not part of the 1%).

Even now, in the midst of a health and economic crisis — with 110,000 Americans dead and counting, with 40 million Americans unemployed and counting — Republicans balk at passing new legislation that would offer additional resources to Americans who are struggling to survive. And our “leader”? He is focused on finger-pointing and name-calling, on ending the ACA, stopping U.S. support of the WHO, silencing the CDC.

Who is your friend and who is your foe? It has never been clearer than now.

JP Pierce