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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Stauber votes no again

Eighth District congressman fails to represent the interests of our region

Posted

It seems nearly every missive from the office of Pete Stauber in recent months has left us here at the newspaper shaking our heads, jaws agape. We think we’ve grown used to the congressman’s hyper-partisanship and his constant dissembling, but then the latest press statement arrives and, somehow, he manages to lower the bar even further.
Perhaps he believes that his over-the-top rhetoric will prevent his constituents from realizing a basic fact about their Eighth District GOP congressman— that he regularly votes against the interests of our region.
Take the recently-passed Inflation Reduction Act, which Stauber, naturally, voted against. The wide-ranging measure takes a number of worthwhile steps in the areas of energy, health care, and taxes.
On the healthcare side, the measure caps insulin prices for Medicare beneficiaries at just $35 for a month’s supply, far less than the hundreds of dollars that many insulin users currently pay. The law also, for the first time, gives Medicare the ability to negotiate lower prices on a number of high-use pharmaceuticals and it requires that drug companies pay a rebate to Medicare if they raise drug prices faster than the cost of inflation. The new law also sets a $2,000 annual out-of-pocket cap for drugs purchased by Medicare Part D beneficiaries. At the same time, it maintains the enhanced premium assistance for middle income individuals or families buying health insurance on the private MNsure marketplace.
Stauber, in his statement, doesn’t say much about the healthcare side of the bill, since he undoubtedly knows these items will be popular with the vast majority of his constituents. But he does take time to parrot a long-overused drug company talking point, suggesting that any controls on drug prices will stifle drug innovation. As if Americans are, uniquely on the planet, supposed to be held financial hostage by drug companies so these fabulously wealthy companies can throw a couple percentage points of their profits towards their next big seller. No other government officials in any other country have ever tried selling this line of manure to their people. It’s only trotted out by Republicans, like Stauber, right here in the U.S.
On the energy side, the bill will help folks in the Eighth District save money, by paying a good chunk of the cost of improving the energy efficiency of their home. The bill includes truly hefty rebates on highly-efficient heating systems, such as air source heat pumps, as well as many appliances, which will help reduce your energy bill. It also makes major investments in renewable sources of power and offers 30 percent tax credits for homeowners who install photovoltaics on their roof. That’s another investment in lowering electric bills, while simultaneously addressing the climate crisis.
Stauber calls the measure “a $12 billion attack on clean energy production, which will further punish American families at the pump.” Yes, that strikes us as unintelligible gobbledygook as well.
The measure, incidentally, had a number of sweeteners for the oil and gas industry, at the behest of West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, but Stauber doesn’t mention any of those measures.
On taxes, he states that the new law’s $80 billion investment in the Internal Revenue Service is intended to “harass and intimidate American families, farmers, and small businesses.” That’s not just false, it directly ignores the very real disaster the U.S. has experienced for its chronic underinvestment in the IRS. Pity the poor taxpayer who is trying to do his or her own taxes (to save money) and has a question for the IRS. Only one in ten taxpayers looking for help is actually able to reach an IRS staffer because of their depleted workforce. At the same time, the agency’s auditing division is so overwhelmed that the wealthy have all but gotten away with murder in recent years. And because auditing the taxes of the wealthy is complicated and time-consuming, the agency has focused in recent years on the easy audits, mostly of low and middle-income families who qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit. Meanwhile, the real scofflaws get to skate. Current estimates put the uncollected tax bill in the U.S. at nearly a trillion dollars a year, and the vast majority of that is from the wealthy and large corporations. Having the auditors to go after these big-time tax cheats would go a long way toward addressing the federal budget deficit and allow for lower taxes on the rest of us.
A law that reduces the price of prescription drugs, helps Americans cut their energy use and save more money, addresses climate change, and makes our tax system fairer would seem to help an awful lot of residents of the Eighth District. So why is Pete Stauber voting no on this kind of legislation? Who is he really representing? Certainly, not us.

Comments

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  • snowshoe2

    Why does he not like healthy people? he opposed the covid vaccine which showed 98.5% of deaths were the unvaccinated people. Pete is the trumpy bear cult and anti-democracy more important than lives?

    Wednesday, August 24 Report this

  • brianlafrenier

    If Pete was told not to vote for something then like a good boy, he'll bow to his buddies on anything. He plays the game well just like the local candidates are doing. A political flyer came in the mail today from a Republican Candidate. This Candidate is still shopping around the notion that all Democrats want to defund the Police. I know I don't want to defund the Police and I know many others think the same way. This notion was made prevalent after the George Floyd murder by a Democratic Representative from the Twin Cities. She still shops that around. Most of us Democrats just want accountability from the top down in the Police Departments. It wouldn't hurt to get more Police also. This person who sent us the flyer also is concerned about how the Defund the Police movement has emboldened criminals. I disagree wholeheartedly. If a criminal wants to commit a crime, they will commit a crime. I doubt if they listen to the news and think; they're going to defund the police so...let's go rob a bank today. This person has also stated that they will bring jobs to the Mining Industries and the Timber Industries. That is fueled by demand for products but I would agree in part that environmental rules and regulations play a part in the expansion and opening of new mines. In short. We have strict Environmental Laws in this country and we shouldn't gamble with them by loosening what we now have for the sake of jobs that will only last a couple of decades. Companies need to have the understanding that if there is an environmental spill of any kind THEY will pay for it and not the taxpayers. Minnesota is a global leader in mining but like anything, global demand fuels this. Not politicians.

    Thursday, August 25 Report this

  • snowshoe2

    Biden has increased Police funding since he got in.

    Also Trump said all the police in the Jan.6th attack on the capital were bad people( 6 police died directly-around 4 committed suicide and over 30 more were injured protecting our democracy.

    Trump said that was America's finest hour. Pete followed along in a cult-like manner.

    Friday, August 26 Report this

  • brianlafrenier

    Biden has increased funding for Police but it hasn't gone far enough yet. I think there needs to be more Police around the country. There just has to be more viable candidates for that position. I can't imagine being a Police Officer in this Political Climate. It's interesting that all of the Republicans who slammed any Democrat about Defunding the Police are now saying that the FBI should be defunded because of the so-called "raid" on Trump's Mar a Lago. They're saying it was political to do so on an ex-President. This, before all of the facts, aren't out yet on the entire scope of the "raid." I haven't looked to see what Pete Stauber's views on that are. I must assume he will tow the Party's Political Line on it though. After the January 6 insurrection and even though Pete hunkered down in the Chamber, he pretty much *****ooed the whole incident and asked everyone to just move forward. We had no choice. Pete along with his band of Republican deniers voted no to Impeaching a President for his role in the insurrection. Now, look at where we are now. After months of trying to get do***ents away from Trump's clutches, Trump is spinning yet another tale of woe is me, they're picking on me again so.....send me money. Who knows what he would have done with those do***ents if he wasn't in the fix that he's in? We still don't know if all of those do***ents are in the hands of the FBI yet. There could be more. I'm just assuming here that there is more to the story as far as all of the reasons for the search. Meanwhile. Trump is liking being in the spotlight once again. He thrives on that and he still holds a tight grip on the Trump Republican Party and that's scary.

    Saturday, August 27 Report this

  • scasey2222

    Stauber votes no for everything. It's an embarassment to the Northland. No to healthcare, no to women's rights, no to addressing climate change, no to vetran's benefits, and the list goes on. Shameful. Why would anyone vote against their interests for someone like Stauber? He's not supported by unions, farmers, or business. Yep- he needs to go in November. Let's vote him out!!

    Saturday, August 27 Report this

  • snowshoe2

    I have sent messages to Stauber over 20 times. Zero replies, except asking for money.

    Saturday, August 27 Report this

  • petersoa840

    Very good post! In light of the points you’ve made, it’s hard to understand why voters in the Eighth District return him to office. I understand that voters on the Iron Range like him because of his self-professed concern for miners. But Republicans, especially MAGA Republicans like Stauber, are concerned about the welfare of Mining company managers and owners, not the labor force and they bury their heads in the sand when it comes to taking action on Climate Change.

    Republicans, Stauber among them, clearly have decided that in order to gain political power they will do anything: suppress free and fair elections, lie, dissemble (“ to put on a false appearance : conceal facts, intentions, or feelings under some pretense”), and ultimately destroy democracy in our country. Vote them out!

    Sunday, October 9 Report this