October 20th 2010
David Sanders-Democratic Nominee for US Representative (4th District)-
Discusses An Opponent’s Budget Plan That Will Deprive Seniors, Devastate Purdue, and Deny Veterans Their Benefits
Dr. David Sanders, Democratic nominee for the office of U.S. Representative for the 4th Congressional District of the State of Indiana, held a press conference at 3:30 PM,
Wednesday, October 20 at 529 Main Street in Lafayette. He discussed the continued misrepresentation of the budget of the office of the Secretary of State by Todd Rokita and its implications for the campaign to represent the 4th District in Congress.
Dr. Sanders stated, “I have run a positive campaign–meeting people throughout the district at civic organizations, at the Fairs in each County, and through campaigning door-to-door in each County. I have answered voters’ questions and explained how I would work to bring ethics to Washington and jobs to Indiana.
“Nevertheless, I don’t like being lied to by government officials.
“The Republican candidate has made reducing government spending the core of his candidacy. At the October 7 debate sponsored by WLFI, WBAA, and the Journal and Courier Mr. Rokita made the following statement in response to a question about government spending, a variant of one that he has repeated at nearly every campaign event during the election:
‘As your Secretary of State I am operating on a 1987 budget unadjusted for inflation.’
“This assertion was repeated in the October 13 Purdue Exponent:
‘As Indiana’s Secretary of State, I reduced the office’s budget to 1987 levels – unadjusted for inflation.’ and again in the October 20
‘As Secretary of State, I have reduced the budget of my office, dollar-to-dollar, to 1987 levels, unadjusted for inflation.’
“At the debate during a period of response to Mr. Rokita’s answer I stated my commitment to reducing federal government spending and then followed with production of the numbers that indicate that Mr. Rokita’s statement on his budget is a complete misrepresentation of the facts. In the debate format I did not have the time to present the detailed figures. I do so today.
“The data are clear. The budget of Secretary Rokita’s office has more than doubled during his term. His assertion is absolutely false. His statement following the debate that the additional funds spent by his office come mainly from fines is also false.
“Mr. Rokita has continued to tell falsehoods about his major claim for his candidacy. It is equivalent to saying that you live only on your Social Security check when actually most of your income comes from a private pension. It’s a lie.
“How can we trust Mr. Rokita to cut spending in Washington when he can’t even be honest about the spending of his own government office?
“This false claim is connected with Mr. Rokita’s budget plan. At the debate in Frankfort on October 18, Mr. Rokita reiterated his pledge to eliminate Medicare part D, the prescription drug benefit. Many senior citizens depend upon Medicare part D for lifesaving medicines, but Mr. Rokita doesn’t care.
“I have for many years been a strong advocate for veterans. I believe that veterans have earned the benefits that they have been promised. The last two years have seen progress in increasing funding for health benefits for veterans. Mr. Rokita has proposed eliminating those hard-fought advances and reducing funding an additional 7.5%. His proposal would eliminate the new program for reducing homelessness among veterans, an issue about which I am particularly concerned. Mr. Rokita doesn’t care.
“Finally, Mr. Rokita has proposed reducing National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation (NSF) research funding by 15% from 2008 levels. This irresponsible and reckless proposal would devastate Purdue and indeed America’s leadership position in science. There would essentially be no new grants funded for at least a year. Young investigators would be completely shut out from conducting research. Mr. Rokita doesn’t care. Such an arbitrary assault on our research endeavors in this country, all in the name of tax cuts for the wealthiest 2%, is unworthy of a U.S. Representative.”