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Guess What My Question Was...

A few weeks back, I wrote my Congresscritter, asking him a question. Based on his answer that follows, see if you can guess what it was...

May 26, 2010

Dear Mr. Hapless Constituent, [I'm paraphrasing here]

Thank you for taking the time to contact me about immigration reform. I value your views, and your input helps me to better represent the people of Indiana's Second Congressional District.

First and foremost, I believe that securing our nation's borders is critical to our homeland security and essential for protecting our communities. Today it is estimated that over 12 million illegal immigrants are living within the United States with an additional 300,000 crossing our borders each year. Clearly, the current immigration system is broken.

Now, more than eight years after the terrorist attacks of September 11th, we still lack the manpower and resources to stop the flow of illegal immigrants into our country. That is why I support proposals to increase the number of border patrol agents, as well as increased funding for the technology and equipment necessary for these agents to prevent immigrants from entering our country illegally.

However, border enforcement alone will not solve the problem. Each year thousands of undocumented workers enter the United States in search of employment opportunities. Although it is against the law to knowingly hire undocumented workers, the incentives of cheap labor combined with the lax enforcement of employment laws have encouraged many employers to hire illegal immigrants. As a result, we must improve the workplace enforcement of our employment laws and crack down on employers who knowingly hire undocumented workers.

Illegal immigration will likely continue to be a highly contentious issue. Although a solution will inevitably require bipartisan support, I will oppose any proposal that amounts to amnesty. Rest assured, when the House of Representatives considers immigration legislation, I will carefully review it to determine if it is in the best interests of our district.

The United States has a rich tradition built upon the hard work of immigrant citizens from all over the world. Out of respect for our laws and those who have followed them, I will continue to work hard to ensure that American citizenship is reserved for those who play by the rules.

Thank you again for contacting me about this important issue. Please do not hesitate to write, call or email me again if I can ever be of assistance. Also, if you would like to receive regular updates on my actions on your behalf in Congress, sign up for my e-newsletter, The Donnelly Dispatch, at

Joe Donnelly
Member of Congress 

My question (and this was the ONLY thing I included in my short email to him):

Did you, or did you not, stand and applaud when, in his address to the US Congress, Mexican President Calderon denounced the new Arizona law addressing the illegal immigration issue in that state?

This is not the exact wording, but it is close and does not materially alter the original message.

I have since rewritten the man, asking for a paper copy of his response to the original question...and sent an email copy of the request message to his opponent's campaign office. We'll see if that concentrates his mind.

Just so you know, this guy supported ObamaCare, supports card check, i.e., denying employees the right to a secret ballot in deciding whether or not they are unionized, and I'm fairly certain he voted for San Fran Nan for Speaker. Yutz.


The intern who gets the job of answering the mail has a file of stock letters- one for each issue. Minions usually answer emails and snail mail. Someone once told me that faxes are more likely to get seen by the head of the office staff... but I can't verify that.
...hence my copy to his challenger in the November elections.

I know how these things happen, having watched the sausage being made in another life. If the he isn't briefed by his staffers about it, he may learn via campaign literature from the opposition, something incumbents don't like to have happen to them.

I already know they know who I am and where I live, based on my experience at one of his townhall meetings this summer. They've just gotten lazy--this letter is proof. Let's sit back and count the flash-to-bang time on this one...
He has the "D" mark of the Devil after his name.

That should be sufficient to show that he (almost certainly) stood and applauded.

He is not your friend, although he might want to be your pen pal.

Vote for anyone else in November when this scumbag is up for reelection.
SWWBO and I spent yesterday going to Peabody, KS, with the Castle Technical to be the parade vehicle for Congressman Jerry Moran, who is running for Brownback's Senate seat.  I'm on his "military advisory committee" with the VA and 2nd Amendment portfolios.  It sounds much more impressive than it really is.

Since Moran is running against Todd Tiahrt, Kansas has two of it's three Republican-held (out of four total) House seats open, which has brought a *lot* of candidates out in the primary.

SWWBO and I were approached by each of them as they think, among other things, we might have pull in the Moran campaign. We don't, aside from being nice people who volunteer - well, I might actually have some gravitas on 2A issues, but there aren't any burning issues on the 2A that Moran needs any advice on - he's a reliable supporter.

Anyway - SWWBO and schooled 'em all on constituent service - to include that, if nothing else, the first paragraph of a boilerplate response should include verbiage that indicates that a human being actually read your missive in a substantive way before launching off into the standard press release.

Interestingly enough - the ones for whom that caused a light to go off over their head are the ones who acted the least like professional politicos - the others looked at us like - "Oh, you dreamer..."   I told them that taking me for granted (me and many others) is why Jim Ryun was unemployed as a politician.

Once upon a time I asked Representative Mike Pence (R-In) a simple question, that I figured could be answered in a very short sentence......."Congressman, when did you first learn that Governor Daniels intended to close the Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Children's Home?"  (It was in his district)

Any question that could be considered even remotely embarrassing to an incumbent, regardless of political party, is eventually ignored if you attempt to press the point.

You can't get an honest answer out of any of 'em........Republican or Democrat.

I take issue with your Congress-critter.  There is a program that POSITIVELY lets employers know that the people they hire are eligible to work in the US.  And it's free.

It's a joint program, between DHS and IRS, that compares databases (they leave this part vague) to determine your eligibility.  Your employer puts in your info, (three forms of ID, birth certificate, SSAN card, Drivers license, etc) and it comes back with a Yes/No response.

I just had to submit myself to this process for my employer to get certification.  BTW:  I'm retired Military, maintaining my security clearances, working for a Government contractor that helps shoot rockets into space.  "They" don't  know who I am?  And whether or not I'm eligible to work for the US?

The program is called "E-verify".  I won't swear to it, but I think it's