Gov. Bill Richardson – 2006-03-11 10:01:39
NEW MEXICO — When it comes to homeland security Republicans say the same thing over and over: “trust us.” Yet lately they have been doing plenty to undermine America’s national security. Not only did the Bush administration stand firmly behind a controversial deal to sell the operation of six US ports to a foreign government (the United Arab Emirates), but the president’s proposed budget would also cut the National Guard by 17,000 members.
Simply put, Republican rhetoric doesn’t match reality. It is not enough for them to say they will keep us safe, when they are cutting the number of people whose job it is to do so.
While many people are already looking forward to the 2008 presidential election to change the direction of this country, this year’s 36 governors races provide an opportunity in 2006 to make a change. American families can’t afford to wait until 2008 for a new Democratic president who will make important issues — like the National Guard — a priority.
Tell the White House that you won’t wait for ’08 to support the Guard.
Democratic governors understand how vital the National Guard is to homeland security and emergency preparedness. We respect the servicemen and women and the sacrifices they are making in the war on terror. We know we can count on the Guard whenever disaster strikes our states.
And now, because of failures by the federal government to protect our borders, some governors are relying on the National Guard to prevent illegal immigration.
Despite America’s increased reliance on the National Guard, Republicans are actually trying to cut funding for the Guard and are planning to trim 45,000 members from it over the coming years. During our recent meeting with President Bush, Democratic governors urged him to strengthen his support for the National Guard rather than cut its funding. Only time will tell if he actually listened.
For the last several months, poll after poll has shown that people believe our country is headed in the wrong direction under Republican leadership. You can turn that around, and you don’t have to wait for the next presidential election to do it.
Tell the White House you won’t wait for ’08 to support the National Guard and strengthen homeland security. Click Here.
Bill Richardson is the Governor of New Mexico.
PS: The budget process has just begun — and it can last for months. To make sure the National Guard stays strong, we need to keep an eagle eye on the White House. Join us now in protecting our National Guard.