McConnell speaks for Kentucky, not some blue state
In response to your editorial, "Election message to McConnell: Voters reject obstructionism," the last time I checked Sen. Mitch McConnell was sent to Washington by the voters of Kentucky, not the voters of some blue state.
Kentucky, to my knowledge, has never rejected a sitting Democratic presidential candidate as resoundingly, giving 62 percent of the vote to a Republican, a multi-millionaire from New England with little more in common with us culturally than our "redistributor-in-chief."
Mitt Romney won nearly all of Kentucky's 120 counties, piling up big margins from Pikeville to Paducah.
Nationally, it's likely President Barack Obama will have been re-elected with the smallest share of the popular vote of any president winning a second term since Woodrow Wilson in 1916, smaller even than that of George W. Bush in 2004.
Exit polls showed voters felt Obama had more empathy for their problems and they preferred to let him have a do-over than take a chance on a newcomer, not that they had more confidence in Obama's policies.
So, let me get this straight: The election's message for McConnell is that he should relent and do the bidding of the president for the good of our nation?
If you think that is the same message Rep. Ben Chandler got, you would also believe the Herald-Leader has some vacant office space that Andy Barr wants to rent for his local congressional office.
Better than Mitch
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and his congressional Republican comrades did everything in their power to make President Barack Obama a one-term president.
It is good for America they failed. It is also good McConnell failed to become Senate Majority Leader.
Obstructionist McConnell devotes little effort and time working for the common good. He has to be one of the Senate's all-time most politically partisan politicians. Plutocrat McConnell represents rich special interests and shows little, if any, compassion for the middle class and poor.
At a time when money in politics is a serious problem, McConnell makes the problem worse by supporting the Supreme Court's "money is speech" and "corporations are people" rulings.
Over the next two years, it will be interesting to see how he responds to an Obama second term. Will he lead or continue to obstruct?
I attended the Fancy Farm picnic in August and was impressed by the brief speech delivered by Kentucky Secretary of State, Alison Lundergan Grimes. I like her energy and youthful enthusiasm.
By 2014, it will be time to replace our tired, worn-out, out of ideas five-term senator with someone who has the progressive ideas to move Kentucky and America forward. Grimes might be the one to give McConnell a run for his money.
Paul L. Whiteley Sr.
Judd vs. McConnell
In Missing — yes, I know it was just a TV show — but nonetheless Ashley Judd had to draw deeply from something in herself to play that Mama Bear protective character. And what I saw was a fierce Judd that shook me in my boots.
That's exactly what we need to defeat Senator Yes-It's-Time-For-Him-To-Go McConnell — her combination of brains, popularity, sweetness and fight.
I hope she'll do what it takes to establish Kentucky residency and keep the door open.
Everyone I've talked to about this rumor of Judd vs. McConnell has literally lit up at the prospect.
Why? Because we think she could beat him, and we like and respect her brains, ambition, commitment to Kentucky, and history of doing good for others.
Wouldn't that be a case of Kentucky doing the nation a favor? That's the sort of putting Kentucky on the map I'd like to see in the political arena for a change.
T. Meriah Kruse
Cheap coal is a lie
The move to buy our elections was most obvious in Central Kentucky when Big Coal invested so much in one particular local election, Chandler vs. Barr.
The method of dumbing down and creating fear factors to seduce a selfish voter is not concerned about our or the world's environment.
Coal had won its phony "war on coal" when it began buying local and state officials, including the courts, as was well stated in Night Comes to the Cumberlands by Harry Caudill.
I wrote this to Gov. Steve Beshear recently, but it applies to many other politicians who are selling our mountains for money to provide momentary pleasures. Their actions are partly responsible for weather changes/global warming with resulting hurricanes and more.
Burning cheap coal is a lie with coal's destruction, including its pollution of our air, water and soil and its lack of support of education throughout history. Poverty — financial, spiritual, moral and ethical — permeates Kentucky.
If I could bring these thoughts down from the mountains carved in stone, maybe more would believe. But Big Coal and many Kentucky corporations want to crucify the truth and opposition.
Don B. Pratt
Voters duped by Romney
A few days after the election, I was driving in a rural area of Kentucky when I passed a woman standing in her yard holding a Romney/Ryan sign.
The house needed a coat of paint. The yard was bare of landscaping. The car in front was beat up. This was not a wealthy family.
The look on the face of the woman was a mixture of disgust, sadness and disbelief. After all she had been told that Romney couldn't lose.
As an Obama supporter, my first reaction was to laugh, but then I realized how poignant this sight was, how completely this woman had been duped.
The man she had voted for spoke of eliminating food stamps and gutting Medicaid needed to keep her family healthy. He had pledged to give more tax cuts to the wealthy and all but called people like her moochers. And yet, she had wanted him to win.
I can't keep from scratching my head when I think about many disadvantaged Southerners. These folks continue to support Republicans who work to gut the very programs their supporters depend upon.
In two years, it will be time to vote for Congress. If you are reading this, and need the government programs that the Republicans want to eliminate, please watch what they do and listen to what they say. Perhaps then, by some miracle, you will display a sign for a candidate who will look out for your interests — someone who will really deserve your vote.
Blame it on GOP agenda
Once they get through blaming superstorm Sandy or New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for their loss, the GOP overlords will probably turn on Mitt Romney, blaming him as an imperfect candidate.
But they will be wrong. He was the perfect candidate. He embraced and embodied their agenda. It's an agenda of entitled moneyed aristocracy, of unregulated operational impunity for business, of tacit racism, of anti-women, of anti-gay, of anti-science, of anti-intellectualism, of religion over rational thought, of cynicism, of obstructionism and of contempt for the people they govern (and not just the so-called 47 percent).
Their agenda — that's where the blame lies. If the Republican Party doesn't want to further marginalize itself, it must shed extremism and stupidity.
Charles Edward Pogue
Case against tax on wealthy simplistic, insulting
The two offered arguments against raising the tax rate on the very wealthy are: this would not solve the debt crisis and it isn't fair to punish the wealthy for being successful.
One of these arguments is simplistic and the other is simply insulting. What's insulting is the notion that wealth is the measure of success. I hope most of us would agree that all others who work honestly and effectively in service to society are at least as successful as some guy in an office suite counting his hedge-fund profits.
Next, even if the effect on the deficit be but one part of a solution, raising the tax rate on the top one percent of earners would still help significantly and it would be the right thing to do.
If you accept the argument that the money won't solve the all of the debt crisis, then we might as well stop citing drunken drivers since we can't catch them em all, or abandon border security since we know we can't stop all here illegally. We might as well close our schools since we know there will always be the gullible and the dimwits among us.
The only argument left for the Tea Partiers is to contend that it is the wrong thing to do, even if it doesn't diminish privileged lifestyles or threaten investment in our economy. If you still buy their arguments, please tell your pied-piper congressman that you're eager to follow him over the fiscal cliff.