Now that Mitt Romney has named Rep. Paul Ryan (R. WI) as his vice presidential running mate, we now know what’s at stake for women, minorities, students and seniors. Ryan’s ultra conservative plan intends to throw all of them under the bus. Everything is on the line in this election. We are fighting for the soul of our country. In one corner is Romney-Ryan, who will destroy programs for women, minorities, youth and seniors. In the other corner is Obama-Biden who have been fighting for women, minorities and the middle class. The choice is clear if you are in one of these categories. But, don’t take my word for it. Looking at the facts of the Romney-Ryan team will tell the tale.
On women, Ryan shows them zero respect. Ryan not only voted to defund Planned Parenthood but co-sponsored the so-called nick named “Let Women Die Act.” This act would have forbid hospitals from providing emergency abortions for women, even if a woman’s life depended on it. Defunding Planned Parenthood would have the same effects on loss of lives for women. Planned Parenthood provides breast cancer screenings and well women exams for many women who cannot afford to go to other facilities. Less than 10% of Planned Parenthood’s funding is used for abortions services. Nancy Keenan, President of NARAL Pro Choice says the “Romney-Ryan ticket is dangerous to women’s health.”
Seniors will fare no better than women. Ryan has called social security “a Ponzi scheme.” Many seniors rely on social security and would be destitute without it. And for seniors who rely on Medicare for their health services, Ryan wants to get rid of Medicare and replace it with vouchers. A CNN opinion research survey found that 74% of the elderly, including 54% conservative voters, disapprove of Ryan’s Medicare plan. Most Americans believe in Medicare.
One does not need to be a woman or elderly to be hit by the Romney-Ryan bus. It’s coming after youth and students, too. Ryan wants to get rid of Pell grants for more than 1 million students. Pell grants help to defray college costs for many low income and minority students. And these days with soaring college costs, Pell grants are needed for many students. Without them, many students would not be able to afford the cost of a college education. A higher education is crucial not only for students that attend college but for America.
Unless you are the 1% wealthy and won’t ever need social security, Medicare, college tuition aid or women’s health care, then the Romney-Ryan ticket is not in your best interest. Unless you want to be run over by a bus, get out and register to vote and vote. The addition of Paul Ryan was not meant to attract additional voters. It was done to assure the Republican conservative base that Romney supports its ideals to take our country back to a time when Social Security, Medicare, quality health care and a college education were non-existent. And election of Romney-Ryan will take us back even farther than we can imagine.
No one deserves to be run over by a bus. If you vote Romney- Ryan, that’s exactly what will happen. Only in this case, it’s many Americans that will be run over by the bus and left for dead. While 2008’s election was about hope and change, this election is about fighting for the soul of America.
Washington, DC based Debbie Hines is a former prosecutor and founder of LegalSpeaks, a progressive blog on women and race in law and politics. As a legal and political commentator she has appeared in national and local media including the Michael Eric Dyson Show, NBC, ABC and CBS affiliates, RT TV, CBC- Canadian TV, NPR, XM Sirius radio, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Black Enterprise among others. She also writes for the Huffington Post