Response to State Rep Regina Birdsell
The June 13th edition of this paper included a letter from State Rep Regina Birdsell. I have met Rep Birdsell on one occasion and spoken to her by phone on one other and although we don’t agree on much, it was not my impression that she is someone given to careless partisan hyperbole. Therefore, I was surprised to see her inaccurate portrayal of Senator Shaheen’s actions with respect to the current IRS controversy.
By most accounts, there is significant bipartisan outrage over IRS conduct and a desire for everyone to work together to prevent similar behavior in the future. Senator Shaheen has been among the voices calling for such action since the behavior was exposed. She has never named specific organizations or their ideologies for targeting by the IRS and I challenge Representative Birdsell to produce proof of her allegations or retract them.
Representative Birdsell describes Senator Shaheen as “quietly sitting on the sidelines”, a transparently partisan characterization of someone who was not only a very popular and effective governor, but the first woman in history to serve both as a governor and a U.S. Senator. Shaheen has sponsored bi-partisan legislation to improve energy efficiency, championing the fastest, cheapest way to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. She has also championed women’s issues, notably playing a key role in reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.
Senator Shaheen has not only been busy, but is effective, even in the face of cynical Republican obstructionism in the Senate and their failure to produce any new ideas for job creation, healthcare reform, financial reform or other pressing issues. I would much rather have seen a letter from Rep Birdsell that discusses her record in Concord and how she serves her constituents, as opposed to one that is nothing more than inaccurate scandal-mongering about political maneuvering in far away Washington.