Richardson's great idea up to 20 states
Twenty states have proposed polices like Bill Richardson's, unofficial Presidential candidate and Dem governor of New Mexico. The governors of those states are split equally between Dems and Republicans, with most of the Western Dem governors joining in. The issue of paying life insurance premiums for National Guardsmen, which connects the war in Iraq with home front polices is bipartisan and gives great traction to Richardson right now.
He also hits the big time, explaining the great idea to a national audience in USA Today. In addition to the life insurance piece, there are other ways we can support our National Guard troops overseas:
My plan would also make half of military retirement pay exempt from New Mexico state taxes.
Additionally, taxpayers in New Mexico would have the opportunity to contribute to the new Military Family Relief Fund by designating a portion of their refunds on their state tax returns. The fund will be used to pay for clothing, housing, medical and other expenses for those who need and deserve it the most.
When those who serve sacrifice everything, we lose a hero. But their families and loved ones lose much more. When our servicemen and women are standing vigil on the front lines of the war on terror, they should know that we are behind them and that if they fall, we will take care of their families.
We have a responsibility — a moral duty — to take care of our own. And we will.
That this idea is the onramp for a Presidential campaign isn't lost on many. Mario Burgos, a "clear thinker" (Republican) from New Mexico updates us on the Bill's aspirations:
Yeah right! Governor Richardson, it's kind of hard to take you at your word when your own lobbyist has gone ahead and registered:
We're not talking about some johnny-come-lately lobbyists either. We're talking about the kind of folks that former Presidents call "my friend." We're talking about an "A" player Hispanic fundraiser. We're talking about lobbyists that could guide the Governor in "gray area" fundraising.
Now don't get me wrong. I have no problem with Bill Richardson running for President. I just think he owes it to New Mexicans to be up front about his future aspirations. After all, the first Tuesday in November of 2006 we'll be voting for a Governor, and if Richardson is going to be spending all of his time running for President of the United States, we should have that information before we go to the polls.
Your Personal Note:
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(and yes, we know that sometimes they're very, very wrong. Other times, they're right on.)