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Op-Ed: Deely's Lies are 'Downright Despicable'

Rep. Justin Simmons (R-131) shares his view on women's rights legislation in Pennsylvania.

Over the past several months, my opponent and his allies have attacked me for things as untrue as cutting funding that doesn't exist (the temporary federal stimulus money) to as ridiculous as me wanting to hurt Social Security and Medicare (which are federal programs over which I have no control).  However,  the recent attack on me claiming I would put the health of Pennsylvania's women in danger has crossed the line to downright despicable. 

Let's start with the false attack that I voted to shutdown Planned Parenthood clinics.  I did not.  The House of Representatives passed legislation (SB732) directly in response to atrocities committed at the "Philadelphia House of Horrors" clinic of Dr. Robert Gosnall.   For those who forget, this is the clinic where one woman and seven delivered children were murdered, and other women were injured due to a total lack of professional standards and care.

This law actually better protects the health and welfare of those seeking an abortion by requiring clinics to meet minimum safety standards and submit to regular inspections.  Responsible clinics will continue to be available to the public; irresponsible clinics will no longer be allowed to threaten the health of Pennsylvania's women.  In the end, this legislation passed with strong bi-partisan support; in fact, nearly 75% of the House voted in favor of it.

Now let's talk about the "notorious" ultrasound bill (HB1077.)  Again, this is an attack without a foundation. 

I was an original co-sponsor of this legislation, as were more than 100 Democrats and Republicans in the House.  How, you may ask, could more than 100 House members sponsor such egregious legislation?  The answer, of course, is they didn't.

The primary goal of this legislation at the time that I, and so many others, added our names was to ensure that women have the opportunity to view an ultrasound if they so choose.  Currently, doctors may take an ultrasound prior to an abortion without offering the woman the results to view. 

Under current state law, the gestational age of a fetus is to be determined before an abortion is performed.  Further, medical professionals agree that the standard of care for determining gestational age is an ultrasound because of its accuracy.  HB1077, in its original form was built upon these two facts to simply provide someone seeking an abortion further information if they decided they wanted it. However, HB1077 changed from its original form.

Through the legislative process, HB1077 grew to include the invasive techniques publicized across the state.  At the same time, medical providers who had supported the original intent of HB1077 began to raise concerns. 

In response to the concerns of these medical professionals, as well as many constituents,   and because the legislation had changed from its original intent, I withdrew my name as a sponsor from HB1077.

I believe this is exactly the sort of thing the people of the 131st District want in their State Representative: someone willing to constantly review legislation, listen to informed voices and make careful decisions on that legislation as it evolves.  That is what I did.

Taking away the factual repudiation of these baseless attacks, there is also the logical response.  Does anyone really think that I, or any other reasonable person, would support anything that would endanger their wives, sisters and mothers?  I know I would not, and I don't believe that my opponent and his allies would either. 

Sometimes, common sense like this is all you need to see through the hyper-partisan political attacks that my opponent and his allies continue to deploy.

 

Jamie T. October 24, 2012 at 07:07 PM
I left a comment a few minutes ago, but I don't think it took, so I am responding again (apologies if there are two posts later). I think that fact that you are painting educators with one broad, generalized brush is not only misinformed, but ignorant. What gives you the right to assume that every teacher is just like the next? MANY teachers care about the success of their students and trying to help them pave the way to a bright future. How dare you say that teachers only care about pay and benefits? I am a teacher. Do you know how many hours I spend outside the classroom working on stuff for my students? Do you know how many phone calls I've made to parents to discuss how we can better help their child succeed? Do you know how much of my money has gone into making my classroom better, making the materials my students have access to more up to date? I teach U.S. Government. Do you know how many letters I've written and phone calls I've made to get my students materials about the government or to get a politician to give my students a few minutes of their time? Teachers need pay. They need benefits. We work in a school; you don't think we can't get sick? Why shouldn't we want pay and benefits? You want that from the place you work, don't you? Teachers are some of the most important people you need in a society you want to flourish. Respect that.
Mark Spengler October 24, 2012 at 08:55 PM
http://forbesfunds.org/files/GPNP_February_21_2012.pdf Thanks for the question Crestor. Go to page 6. Source: US Census Public Education Finances Report
Mark Spengler October 24, 2012 at 08:57 PM
Rob thanks for the comment. I'm sorry you feel that way. I agree that something needs to be done. Too much reliance of local property tax is a bad thing.
Rob Hamill October 25, 2012 at 01:54 AM
You militant teacher union members sure like to stick together, how else would you guys be able to bankrupt our commonwealth with completley ridiculous pensions that saddle the rest of us to a crippled society.
stephen bailey October 25, 2012 at 07:29 AM
You need to visit president bush mexico city policy and the freedom of choice act that was presented on april 19 2007 hr 1964. Also look up jerrold nadler for more assistance. Good luck justin
Peter October 25, 2012 at 03:08 PM
"What gives you the right to assume that every teacher is just like the next?" the union does...in fact, it demands it.
Crestor Januvia October 25, 2012 at 03:21 PM
You're paid too much. By supply and demand, I could put a sign up at any local school district that said "Wanted - Government Teacher - $35,000 a year with health care and NO pension" I'd have 2,000 applicants. So why should I pay some 15 year vet government teachers $90,000 with gold plated pension? My pay is set by the free market. There is a GLUT of teachers now. It is easy to become a teacher, especially a "Government" teacher. Your pay is as high as it is because we've allowed unions to dictate and hold the taxpayer hostage, as well as stupid democratic legislators who give every protection to teachers unions. Should you get paid? Yes.... what you're worth in a free market. You should be making way less than a good calculus teacher, and you should earn more than a gym teacher. Should you have healthcare? Heck yes.. and you should pay 25% of the premium, just like all the taxpayers who pay your salary. Should you continue to have a pension when virtuallly NONE of your tax base does? I don't think so. You can have a 401K just like we all do. You think you are special and should have EVERYTHING better than the people who pay you.... better pay, not dicatated by the free market... better healthcare that you pay next to nothing for..... the best pension anybody every got, even when you tax base has none. I pay your salary. I want you to live by the same rules I have to. That too much to ask? Oh ya, you're more important, I forgot.
Crestor Januvia October 25, 2012 at 03:23 PM
You're property taxes go DIRECTLY to the school district. Simmons has NOTHING to do with that. DUH. We had too many teachers. We need to cut some. Hey, every other profession lost jobs, why should teachers live in some sort of bubble and not feel the effects. AND EVERY ONE OF THOSE TEACHERS COULD HAVE BEEN SAVED if their "brothers" and "sisters" in the union took a 0% raise for a couple years... JUST LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE DID.
Crestor Januvia October 25, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Local control is better, I prefer the local model. Look.. there's N.J. with the top scores in the country, right there with us. And Mass. too. So who cares if the state raises my taxes so they can increase their share? They'll just rob my district and send it all to Phila, Reading, Lancaster, and waste it on a bunch of kids who are going nowhere.
Crestor Januvia October 25, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Gym teacher ?
Jamie T. October 25, 2012 at 05:03 PM
You have no idea what I make, and you didn't even respond to the questions I asked you. You have NO idea what it is like to be a teacher. And yes, we are very important to society. You are attempting to cover your ignorance by heaping even more of it upon yourself. I don't belong to a union anyway. You think its so easy to be a teacher? Try it. Or, I'd rather you didn't. We don't need people like you in the classroom.
Crestor Januvia October 25, 2012 at 05:52 PM
Always back to the same rhetoric from the teachers union wonks.... "You think it's easy to be a teacher, you try it". Ya, I don't think it's that hard to work 185 days a year, and talk to a bunch of kids. Why don't you try my job? Oh... you can't.... you're not smart enough to do it. You didn't make any points I had to respond to. What points? How about my point. WHY DO YOU DESERVE TO GET SO MUCH MORE THAN THE PEOPLE WHO PAY THE TAXES THAT SUPPORT YOU ???? WHY???? Lots of jobs are important in society. But we don't get paid based on how "important" our job is. If we did, the garbage man would make more money than anybody. WE SHOULD BE PAID BY SUPPLY AND DEMAND. There are probably 10,000 unemployed teachers in PA who could walk into your classroom right now, and do just a good or better job than you. And because there are so many unemployed teachers, they would take WAY LESS than you are making. But instead, we get your ungrateful ass in the classroom, being overpaid and over benefitted, and we just have to listen to you piss and moan. Most people can't stand teachers or their unions. All the mommies that brown nose you when you have their kid actually can't stand you either. You a bunch of entitled, bitchy, overpaid union lunkheads. YOUR DAY IS COMING. YOUR PENSION WILL NEVER BE FUNDED. YOU WILL BE HAVING BIG CHANGE COMING YOUR WAY. I'll laugh when it happens. NOW GET OFF THAT TAXPAYER PROVIDED COMPUTER AND TAXPAYER PROVIDED INTERNET SERVICE.
Cary October 25, 2012 at 09:58 PM
Justin has the state GOP writing all of his positions papers, so we can't expect him to actually keep track of his own lies. If you want to know where he stands on women's right to choose, go here http://www.pafamilyvoter.com/site/search. Justin would vote to ban coverage for abortion services under the state insurance exchanges mandated by Obamacare. He's not finished screwing over the women of PA.
Cary October 25, 2012 at 10:06 PM
I support Kevin Deely because of his positions on four issues: 1 - No more repression of women's right to choose + full funding for Planned Parenthood, 2 - Tax rates on Marcellus Shale drillers comparable to those in other states + full funding for PA DEP to enforce regs protecting people and environment, 3 - Restore state funding for education, so we can prepare our kids for the future, and shifting the burden off local homeowners, 4 - Overturn unconstitutional, voter-suppression, photo ID law, which passed last spring along strict party lines; all GOPs voted for + all Dems voted against. Justin Simmons has been on the wrong side of every one of these issues, hurting PA residents well into the future.
Cary October 25, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Rob Hamill is one of those local "taxpayer groups" that cares about nothing but their own pockets. His entire philosophy is "bankrupt."
Cary October 25, 2012 at 10:10 PM
Justin Simmons "honest"? You must be kidding. Saying you agree with his votes is one thing, but Simmons has a reputation as being among the sleasiest pols out there today. Gimme a break!
Cary October 25, 2012 at 10:13 PM
Arguing with right-wingers is a waste of energy. If government does something right, they squawk about how much it cost. If it does nothing, they rant about how ineffectual government is. When will you guys get tired of playing the easy-but- destructive obstructionist role and learn that we have big problems that demand all parties start working together?
Paula October 25, 2012 at 10:31 PM
@Cary, I am sorry you feel obligated to answer practically everyone's comments inorder to lead everyone to believe Deely is the best man for the job. Kevin Deely ignored the questions asked directly to him from me in a one on one conversation...my thought is, if this is how he treats his constituants prior to being elected, he doesn't deserve to be elected. He certainly is not nearly as knowledgable as Rep. Simmons...who, by the way, did NOT ignore our questions and concerns. Infact he investigated them. You can say whatever you like about Kevin Deely but Justin Simmons is the man for the job!
John Fox October 25, 2012 at 10:49 PM
Cary I give you this: "I have never understood why it is "greed" to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else's money." -Thomas Sowell
John Fox October 25, 2012 at 10:50 PM
Cary = Karen Beyer
Gramma24 October 26, 2012 at 05:47 PM
Okay, we get it....Kevin Deely is a drug addled useless piece of dreck also known as a teacher 'cause Lord knows all the little darlings born into the 131st district are 'above average and in NO NEED of an education' or if they do, their mummies and daddies can get the au pair to educate them.and Justin Simmons is God's little Ray of Sunshine.....that HE gave us to worship and adore. (Isn't that the purpose of the USPatch to wine, dine and ......Simmons) First of all, you have NO idea what or where any of the teachers who have posted here work, or how much they get paid or even if they get benefits never the less how good.......so, like you were asked, unless you know squat about the situation your opinions are about as useful as Simmons waxing eloquent about the functions of a uterus.....he doesn't have one, is not an OB/GYN so why do we allow him to dictate what we, those of us who have one, do with it? And Fox, IF Cary is Karen Beyer, she had that office, she is uniquely qualified to say what it entails.....I think the only reason she didn't keep the seat is Simmons was ready willing and able to get in bed with the GOP and he DIDN'T have female parts. So, Crestor? How much is Simmons paying you for those hummers?
Joe Sommers October 28, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Gramma....If you are Karen Beyer.. why dont you use you real name ???? If you were so good as the State Rep and respected by all the constituents of this District Im sure we all would like to know your opinion.If you dont have enough confidence then yes you will use an alias. and then suggest you get the hell of the Lehigh Valley because you will be tortured forever knowing that Justin Simmons ended your career.
Joe Sommers October 28, 2012 at 03:45 PM
Hey Cary.....You are definitley one of Deely's union Douche Bags. Unfortunately for you Simmons reputation is far from a sleeze ball....He does have a reputation as a gentlemen and a statesmen. Desperate people say the wrong things. If I were you I would walk away from the Deely camp. He has no shot of beating Rep Simmons.
Jamie T. October 29, 2012 at 05:21 AM
Sorry you feel that way, Crestor. By the way, I don't have a computer or internet paid for by the taxpayers. I don't even have a classroom of my own. Hell, I don't even have enough textbooks for all my students. But, I make do with what I have where I am. And, my students are getting a good education not only by me, but by a whole slew of teachers who won't give up on them or the area in which we work. Have you lost all sense of common decency? Apparently, you have because no one who has an iota of respect for someone else goes on rants like you against people in a field you clearly don't understand. I could call you much, much worse, or rather, stoop down to your level. I feel sorry for you Crestor, because you will never know what it is like when you see a student light up in the classroom. You will never laugh when you see a child physically jump up and down in excitement when they get an A on their test, or glow with pride as they conquer their fear of public speaking and give an amazing presentation. You will never know the sense of satisfaction of having a parent teacher conference where you can tell a parent how much progress their child has made. Yes, there are many worthwhile positions out there, many more that lie beyond the realm of teaching. But you forget, Crestor, that you were educated by teachers. And, I quite agree with you that sanitation workers deserve more pay.
Carl Stevenson October 29, 2012 at 06:08 PM
To the teacher and others ... The teachers' union doesn't give a rat's backside about the kids ... See the quote at: http://blog.heritage.org/2009/07/09/nea-general-counsel-union-dues-not-education-are-our-top-priority/ I'm sick and tired of paying about $6,000 per year in school taxes to keep my house by supporting teachers who get paid high full-time salaries and benefits for part-time work, and their pensions, when most of them don't do that good a job and I haven't had kids in school for 25 years (and NEVER here). Education was FAR better before teachers' unions and the federal department of education. Both should be abolished!
Cary October 29, 2012 at 06:56 PM
To Carl and every other retiree who enjoys a lifestyle made possible by all of us public-school-educated taxpayers, do the patriotic thing and just stop voting. Your whole attitude is, I got mine and I'm shutting the door behind me. If you bothered to learn a few facts, instead of just the day's anti-American right-wing rants, you'd know that your taxes are going up because Justin Simmons supported Corbett's slashing of state education funding. Sending representatives like Kevin Deely to Harrisburg would shift the burden back where it belongs. If you've retired your brain, just do the right thing and retire as a voter, too.
Jane Benning October 29, 2012 at 08:35 PM
Since Justin Simmons has been in office, I have called his office to ask questions regarding his voting record and been told they would have to contact Harrisburg to get answers. My response to that is why do we need his office if they cannot answer ANY of my questions. Elliminate his office and just call Harrisburg which would save a lot of money. Each of these representatives have at least 3 or 4 people on our taxpayer payroll. I have also talked to one of his staff at a Salisbury School Board budget meeting and asked them to call and they never did. My calls were only returned recently right before the election. When I called Alen Spector's office when he was our Senator, they Always were aware of the bills and legislative action occuring. Karen Beyer ALWAYS responded and gave aid to constituents and her office was located in a much more central location which was much more accessible to the majority of her constituents and the handicapped. I found Simmons attitude offensive and desrespectful during the debate when he interrupted during K. Deely's responses. Are we forgetting that K. Deely is supported by the Sierra Club and the Conservation Voters of PA? Remember if we do not protect our environment and protect our water and air nothing else matters as we will not be able to live on this planet. Jane
Carl Stevenson October 29, 2012 at 11:30 PM
Cary, You haven't made squat possible for me! Where the hell did you get such an idea?
Carl Stevenson October 29, 2012 at 11:33 PM
Jane, Yes, Deely is supported by a number of left-wing, socialist, tree-hugging moronsmwhomwant to destroy our economy and our way of life. That's why Justin is the better choice. I've always found him to be intelligent, level-headed, and responsible
Cary October 31, 2012 at 07:11 PM
So Carl, just tell me: When did you and all of your WWII generation decide to turn against your country? Is this really all about Vietnam protests? Right-wingers like Simmons and Romney will eliminate Obamacare while you and yours continue to enjoy Medicare and the Drug Benefit. And while you and yours continue to enjoy Social Security, they will phase it out for those of us who are making it possible for you. Do you like seeing what austerity has done to Greece and European countries? Do you assume you'll be dead before the worst hits our society and inconveniences you in any way?

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