To the editor:
This letter is in response to Diane Logan's letter that was published on Monday, June 2.
My name is Jonathan, and after reading your letter of concern toward the Corbett administration and whether or not he should earn your vote this November, Diane, I think that you perfectly described what is the bedrock of Pennsylvania, and indeed, America: a retired widow of a combat veteran who is looking for a leader who can and will reflect your values. The values that you described in your letter, including about how we create an economy that encourages more jobs and fewer taxes while protecting the sanctity of life and preserving the institution of marriage, are ones that I share with you as a young, first-time voter.
While it is easy to find negative news and difficult to find positive press coverage about the bold solutions Governor Corbett has put forth, I am writing as a local citizen to set the record straight. First of all, Governor Corbett is the first pro-life governor in Pennsylvania's history - yes, Governor Tom Ridge was a Republican, but a pro-choice one. Last year, Corbett signed the first pro-life bill in Pennsylvania history, which bans abortion coverage under the state's Obamacare exchange.
In addition, he fired state employees who failed to follow state law on monitoring abortion centers after the Kermit Gosnell murders. Will you hear anything like this under a Tom Wolf administration? I think not. That is why Governor Corbett has been endorsed for re-election by the PA Pro-Life Federation, which is a state affiliate of the National Right to Life Committee.
And as for the issue of marriage, Governor Corbett specifically addressed on why he won't appeal on the gay marriage ruling: "As a Roman Catholic, the traditional teaching of my faith has not wavered. I continue to maintain the belief that marriage is between one man and one woman ... my duties as governor require that I follow the laws as interpreted by the courts and make a judgment as to the likelihood of a successful appeal." Had Governor Corbett appealed, it would have cost the state thousands of dollars - while the conservative movement needs to re-organize their message on marriage, we should not be wasting any more money on what we know are going to be failed bids to overturn pro-gay marriage rulings.
And to address your concerns of whether or not he is playing politics rather than standing on principle, I would invite you to look at leaders like Corbett who have stuck to their principles. When they do, compromise isn't a dirty word. The result? Pennsylvania has created over 150,000 new private sector jobs, while saving $43 million by cutting the state auto-fleet by 20 percent. In addition, he cut state spending for the first time in 40 years - that's right, 40 years - and ended the death tax on family farms. He has protected and expanded Second Amendment rights to defend you and other families from harm (will you ever hear Tom Wolf defend the Second Amendment?) and has opened doors to enable a booming natural gas industry to create jobs and lead Pennsylvania out of a recession.
Now it's time to bust a few myths: one of the biggest is the notion that the state doesn't tax Marcellus Shale drillers. Since 2007, more than $1 billion in corporate, sales, and state income taxes, have been received as a result of the growth of the natural gas industry. What Corbett doesn't support is a tax aimed on one single industry, and of the few that is now expanding.
We should not, I repeat, we should not compare ourselves to other states with severance taxes because our existing corporate taxes are higher than other states! Pennsylvania has 48,000 new jobs because of Marcellus, and every one of them means tax revenues. But more importantly, it means income for working families. Corbett wants companies to drill here, and to do it safely. We want them to stay here, but you don't get that by adding an extra tax. And if you do, who ends up paying for the natural gas bill? That's right, it's us, the taxpayers.
If Corbett's critics are right, that he's made all his decisions based on polls, then he must not be very good at reading them. Instead of taking the usual Harrisburg approach - of either worrying about it later or raising taxes and killing job creators - Governor Corbett led. Were the decisions he's made to get where we are today tough? Yes. Were they always popular with those who would rather tax and spend? No. Were they politically expedient? Never. But leadership isn't politically expedient; leadership and governing are about doing what's right, not what's easy. That's why Governor Corbett has earned the endorsements from all living former Governors of Pennsylvania (except Ed Rendell, of course), as well as Governor Rick Perry of Texas, former Senator Rick Santorum, and Michael Reagan, the son of the late President Ronald Reagan, to name a few.
Diane, Governor Corbett has kept a lot of the promises he made when running 2010, but he never promised that this journey would be easy, and he won't promise that now. His path may seem bumpy, but it leads to a better place. And he has kept his eyes fixed on the horizon knowing that prosperity is with us and that we are surely blessed to be citizens of this Commonwealth, and indeed this nation, under God. Thank you for reading my letter, and I would like to express my deepest sympathies for your late husband, whom I am sure has endured sacrifices for America that I cannot begin to imagine. May God bless you.