Having grown up in Western Pennsylvania, specifically the 18th congressional district, and driving back over the years through mountains and valleys along the Monongahela River, I’ve witnessed the economic decline of the once booming steel towns that dot the region. People have been forced to leave the area in pursuit of better jobs and opportunities.
Administrations, both Democrat and Republican, have promised to deliver change. Every election they campaign on it, then they get elected and middle America gets forgotten.
That tide shifted with the election of President Trump. So far, he’s doing everything he said he would do.
On Tuesday, voters in the18th District have a choice in a special election between Republican State Representative Rick Saccone, a former Air Force Counter Intelligence Officer, and Democrat Conor Lamb, a former Marine and Assistant U.S. Attorney.
A vote for Conor Lamb would be a vote for the Democrat party whose failed policies are more of the same. They’re policies that have forgotten about middle America, which is the heart and soul of the 18th district.
They’ve driven out industrial and manufacturing jobs and mired small businesses with taxes and regulations. Put quite frankly: why would anyone want to go back to the failed policies of the past that left this entire region devastated?
Lamb is young, good looking, and charismatic. However, good looks don’t create jobs, revitalize the economy, and let you keep more of your money.
Rick Saccone will be a needed ally to President Trump at a time when even some Republicans want to oppose him and govern from the swamp. Saccone will support the president’s policies to continue to “Make America Great Again” - policies that are delivering on the hope and change we were promised under President Obama but never saw.
When Hillary Clinton, the presidential candidate from Conor Lamb’s party, said she was going to put coal miners and coal companies out of business during the presidential election, where was Conor Lamb? He was eerily silent when his party’s candidate said she’d take jobs away from people in his state, and now he’s asking those people for their vote.
Coal miners, steel workers and the working class people who supply these industries with their family businesses overwhelmingly voted for President Trump. For the first time in decades, they’re getting the attention they deserve.
In June, a new coal mine opened in nearby Somerset county, marking the first time a mine has opened in the country in years. Corsa Coal Company’s CEO said, “The tone of government has completely changed. Coal is no longer a four letter word.”
He also credited President Trump with rolling back regulations and supporting the development of more energy resources at home such as coal, shale oil, and natural gas. That means more jobs for working families in Western Pennsylvania.
The Somerset County Commissioner said of the coal mine, “It will put guys back to work and put money in their pockets. It’s going to be a boom for everyone.”
Where was Conor Lamb when the coal mine opened? Did he have any good words for his fellow Pennsylvanians, who had waited so long for good news? Once again he was eerily silent. Had his party’s candidate won the presidency the coal industry would be losing jobs not creating them.
People in Western Pennsylvania, like the rest of the country, have seen increases in their paychecks thanks to the Trump tax cuts, which Lamb opposed. Small businesses are no longer saddled with regulations and have found relief because of the tax cuts, as well. A CNBC survey out last month found that optimism among small businesses for the president’s tax cuts hit a new high.
Likewise, there is a great deal of support in Western Pennsylvania for the President’s plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, except from Canada and Mexico. The tariffs would help protect those steel and aluminum jobs that are still the heart of the region. Jim McCaffrey, a senior vice president for coal sales at Consol Energy said the tariffs could "revive the American steel industry."
Lamb is young, good looking, and charismatic. Outwardly, he’s got all the makings of a politician.
However, good looks don’t create jobs, revitalize the economy, and let you keep more of your money. On substance, he’s part of the party of politics as usual that has done nothing to help Western Pennsylvania.
He is the past, Saccone and Trump are the future.
It appears that Lamb is pulling the wool over people’s eyes in what is a conservative, Democrat district. While publicly trying to play himself off as a moderate, he is anything but that. In fact, his recent extreme, anti-Israel comments that surfaced from his time at the University of Pennsylvania would suggest that he’ll fit right in with the far-left Washington establishment liberals.
While a student at the university, he was upset about an ad in the school newspaper, the Daily Pennsylvanian, that was supportive of Israel. Commenting in the paper Lamb said, "It was disheartening to see the add (sic) in the DP the other day which read, ‘Wherever we stand, we stand with Israel.’" He went on to say that Israel was guilty of terrorism and their government targeted civilians.
Saccone, like Trump, understands that Israel is one of America’s closest allies. Lamb does not.
When voters go to the polls on Tuesday they can choose to vote for Rick Saccone and continue the pro-economic, pro-growth policies of President Trump that are bringing jobs back to the region. Their other choice is to vote for Conor Lamb and the policies of the party of Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton, who want to ship industrial jobs overseas, and refer to the pay raises and bonuses that millions of people have received as “crumbs.”
This is Conor Lamb’s party. If he wins, where will Conor Lamb be, on the side of the people or the party? His eerie silence has been deafening.