Late last week, we at IssaWatch were fortunate to meet Rena---a mother, and small business owner, and one of the hundreds of thousands of CA-49 residents that Darrell Issa has not asked to help determine the priorities of the House Government Oversight Committee.
Like millions of Americans, Rena works hard, plays by the rules, and volunteers her time to help her community. She also supports local jobs through her small marketing company.
Rena and her son were also both recently diagnosed long-term health problems. Their Congressman’s response was voting to allow their insurance provider to deny them coverage for these “pre-existing” conditions. Facing a spike in her health insurance costs, a choice between her own medication and medicine for her son, and the even the prospect of losing her coverage altogether, Rena decided to contact her Congressman.
Not for the first time, Rena called Issa's office asking to meet with him. Instead of getting a meeting, she was told that she won't ever get one.
Instead of meeting with Rena, Issa did make time for folks who shelled out $125 a pop to attend a Vista Chamber of Commerce event at the posh Shadowridge Country Club Friday night. While Issa was inside vowing to champion the cause of the DC Lobbyists
he’s asked to help drive his committee’s agenda, Rena was outside for hours in the chilly night— hoping for just a few seconds to speak to her Congressman.
Tragically, Rena’s experience mirrors that of a growing number of Americans for whom the concept of a truly “Representative” government is almost always out of reach. A few weeks ago, Rena’s Congressman, Rep. Darrell Issa, sent letters to more than 150 corporate lobbyists who aren’t in his district to ask what he could do to make their lives a little easier. But Rena—one of the small business owners who create nearly two-thirds
of the new jobs in this country and one of the 331,000 CA 49 residents with pre-existing conditions who are directly impacted by the new healthcare law -- couldn’t even get a meeting.
At Courage Campaign we believe members of Congress should represent the people who live in their districts—not DC Lobbyists who fund their campaigns. That’s why last week, we asked Issa's constituents in the 49th District to tell us what they think Issa should investigate. We’ll be releasing many of these thoughtful ideas in the coming days.
Yesterday, Representative Issa began acting on the recommendations of his lobbyist friends on K Street by holding hearings to spotlight their concerns. Meanwhile the constituents on main street—small business owners like Rena—are literally being left out in the cold.
So if you’re thinking that Issa’s committee hearings on regulatory burdens to job creation represents anything other than Washington politics as usual, you must have been asleep for the past ten years. Rena and the millions of Americans just like her are proof positive that if DC lobbyists were the solution to America’s economic problems, we wouldn’t have so many.