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Friday, Oct 20, 2017
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Letters to the editor: Blommel responds

Blommel responds I want to thank the Tribune for acknowledging my experience in a variety of capacities, including all-important customer service. This experience in leadership capacities in business and in a dozen community and civic organizations has taught me valuable skills in management, interpersonal communications and receptivity to new approaches to current and future challenges. It was disappointing to learn that the editorial board chose to recommend the incumbent Pasco County tax collector, who has been in office for 32 years. More spending in the tax collector's office is a sign of old government ideas of throwing money at the problem. I believe new, creative ways of facing the challenges ahead are needed and not two new county-owned supercenters as proposed. The choice for Pasco County voters is clear: A fresh, fiscally conservative leader who will be visible, involved and uses a common-sense approach to future planning, or re-elect an incumbent who supports an old style of government to spend more, borrow more and build more.
I am asking for your vote for Pasco tax collector Nov. 6. Ed Blommel Dade City 'Misleading rhetoric' Simply put, Dea Wilkins is just plain wrong ("Why Floridians should vote for Amendment 8," Other Views, Oct. 11). On Nov. 6, Floridians who value their religious liberty and who believe that government should not be in the business of religion should vote "no" on Amendment 8. Contrary to Wilkins' flawed assertion, Florida's "No Aid" provision in no way bars nonprofit groups affiliated with houses of worship to get taxpayer dollars to perform necessary social work. The truth is that what Wilkins and other Amendment 8 proponents say about the Council on Secular Humanism case is the direct opposite of what the First District Court of Appeal said, which is: "We agree that Florida's no-aid provision does not create a per se bar to the state providing funds to religious or faith-based institutions to furnish necessary social services. As we explained in dicta in Holmes … 'nothing in the Florida no-aid provision would create a constitutional bar to state aid to a non-profit institution that was not itself sectarian, even if the institution is affiliated with a religious order or religious organization.' " For 127 years, Florida's No Aid provision has protected religious liberty by prohibiting the state from compelling taxpayers to fund houses of worship with which they are not affiliated or agree, while allowing state funding to religiously affiliated groups for much-needed social work without issues of taxpayer-funded proselytizing or discrimination. Look at the facts and not misleading rhetoric. David Barkey Anti-Defamation League 'Pathetic record' I suppose the writer of "Empty-suited promises" (Your Views, Oct. 21), accusing Mitt Romney of being vague on his plan for creating jobs, was OK with Barack Obama's 2008 campaign, a love fest that only talked about "Hope and Change" and little else. This time it's all about "Forward" — not his record. Obama likes to brag that he's created 5 million jobs, but what he fails to mention is that most are low-paying. Additionally, according to CNN, the nation shed 4.3 million jobs during his term, and the net gain since he took office in January 2009 is just 125,000 jobs — a pathetic record. Mitt Romney, on the other hand, had a stellar record saving and creating jobs. Even Bill Clinton praised Bain Capital. Romney had a 78 percent success rate during his time there, helping companies succeed. President Obama has never run so much as a lemonade stand. Our national debt is now more than $16 trillion. Another scary statistic: That's over $51,000 for every man, woman and child in the country, or $141,000 for every taxpayer. This president simply can't (or won't) address this fast-approaching catastrophe. We now borrow nearly 54 cents of every dollar we spend. This election we really do have hope. Larry McClain Wesley Chapel
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