NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Election Connection

August 17, 2012

Tierney and Tisei spar on Medicare

BEVERLY — In a stump speech in Beverly yesterday, Congressman John Tierney tried to paint a clear contrast for voters between his Democratic views and those of Republican opponent Richard Tisei.

“Instead of lifting the middle (class) up and supporting opportunity and supporting people, (Republicans) want to go back to the unproven theory of trickle-down economics,” Tierney told a few dozen people at the Colonial Gardens Retirement Community in Beverly.

“Democrats want everyone to pay their fair share, to get rid of tax loopholes and spend on priorities like getting people back to work and on security for seniors. Republicans want to take care of people who are already well-off and hope someday we’ll all benefit from it. That’s radical. That has never worked.”

Tierney said the GOP’s strategy crystallized when Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney selected House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan as his vice presidential running mate. Ryan’s budget plan calls for cutting both spending and taxes and privatizing Medicare, among other provisions that rankle Democrats.

The Tierney camp has been eager to align Ryan and Tisei in an attempt to convince voters that his opponent is too far to the right.

“You always hear, ‘This is the most important election.’ But maybe it’s true this time,” Tierney said. “The Republicans have decided not to compromise; they want to win the whole ideological argument and bring things way to the right.

“My opponent got into the race because Paul Ryan went out and recruited him. He knows the Ryan budget well. He was handpicked to go down to Washington and get a private tutorial.”

Tisei, who denies that he was recruited by anyone, confirmed that he was one of 12 people invited to go to Washington to meet with Ryan and economists about the proposed budget. He has met with Democrats, too, including former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, he said.

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