2011-02-18 / Columnists

It’s My Turn

By Margaret Wagner

It did not surprise me to see Congressman Anthony Weiner’s recent article in The Wave arguing how repealing the health care law will significantly harm the Big Apple. As someone who campaigned for his 2010 Republican challenger Bob Turner, I have come to recognize that he never stops arguing his positions, even when the majority of his constituents do not want the new health care law.

It doesn’t seem to bother Congressman Weiner that many believe, as a federal judge ruled a few weeks ago, that the health care overhaul is unconstitutional because it violates people’s rights by forcing them to buy health insurance by 2014 or face penalties. Although 26 states have sued to block the law and just this week, 21 state governors sent a letter to the Health and Human Services Secretary outlining how they believe the law will cripple their states, Congressman Weiner still believes in this new law. In the letter, the governors state the new health care system, “is seriously flawed, favors dependency over personal responsibility, and will ultimately destroy the private insurance market.” The governors are asking for unfettered flexibility in crafting state insurance exchanges, and for waivers from the law’s “costly mandates.” Indiana governor Mitch Daniels went a step further by writing in the Wall Street Journal in reference to the Health Care Law that “all claims made for it were false.”

While Congressman Weiner claims in his article that the health care law would reduce the deficit, experts in the industry and state governors are saying the opposite. Not to mention that premiums have already increased. As new mandates are implemented, private insurance companies will be forced to further increase rates and the burden will fall on small business owners and hardworking taxpayers. These are the same middle class people that Congressman Weiner claims to be fighting for.

I am comforted by the fact that the majority of the people in the area covered by The Wave are no longer buying Congressman Weiner’s act. Allow me to point out that while the Congressman won the overall election for the 9th District, he lost the Rockaways to Bob Turner by 57 percent/43 percent. I am very proud to have been part of the Bob Turner Team. Republican Bob Turner, a businessman and non-politician stepped into the political arena when no one else would. Despite being outspent by a margin of 4 to 1 against an entrenched incumbent, Anthony Weiner, an unknown Republican won in our area.

Below are the number of votes each candidate received:

Breezy Point and Roxbury:
Turner 1, 573
Weiner 339
Belle Harbor/Neponsit:
Turner 1,978
Weiner 1,525
Rockaway Park:
Turner 661
Weiner 1,263
Broad Channel:
Turner 373
Weiner 287
Total local tally:
Turner 4,585
Weiner 3,414

It has been speculated that Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer will soon vacate her seat. If this happens, I look forward to continuing the Republican momentum in our area. It is time for another Republican to win a seat for New York and it can be done right here in the Rockaways!

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