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Letter: Sitting This One Out

I am a lifelong Democrat. I come from a family of staunch Democrats. As a child the first word I could spell was “Roosevelt.” I was going to door-to-door giving out flyers at the age of 11. My father was a Democratic leader. I was a Democratic committeeman as a well as a candidate on the Democratic line – one loss and one win. I was taught that to vote for anyone but a Democrat risks your voting hand falling off.


This year something strange has happened to certain levels of my party, that I proudly supported with my heart, my sweat and hours as well as my money. 


My local party under Mayor Suozzi in Glen Cove seems to be doing just fine, and I am proud to be a supporter. The State party under Governor Cuomo is pushing a progressive agenda that is very positive. He is a strong leader.


I am greatly encouraged by the re-emergence of Tom Suozzi as a candidate for County Executive. He can make a difference and, I hope, rehabilitate an ineffective and misguided Democratic legislature.


The National party? Disappointing is too weak a word.

This is the party of Franklin D. Roosevelt (I can still spell it), Harry S. Truman, JFK and Lyndon B. Johnson. The party who rebuilt this country after a great depression- built highways, bridges and tunnels – the WPA- Social Security – Medicare- Voting Rights – Civil Rights and on and on.

This party could not get enough Democratic votes, while they have the majority, to pass a bill for background checks for gun buyers.

Simply amazing. It is a disgrace that politicians who label themselves Democrat have shown themselves to be ineffective leaders who lack the skill set required to promote and move forward social agendas of such import. These same Democrats allowed aid for Sandy to be held up – what will they do for Oklahoma should the unthinkable happen and Republicans withhold their support?


Then we turn to Nassau County. The county is indebted to certain taxpayers some $300-plus million for collecting, keeping and spending money that they have over-taxed their constituents.


In the wake of Sandy and the general economy, the taxpayers need this money to run their households, expand the economy, hire more county residents and give donations to charities and simply because they are due money to which the county was never entitled.


At this point, they county has agreed that they owe the refunds.


For the past number of decades under both Republican and Democratic county administrations these refunds were funded by the sale of long term bonds. 


Now, the Democratic minority in the Legislature has blocked the county from bonding the refunds that would allow taxpayers to be repaid. 


These taxpayers have paid excessive taxes to the county. Again, the county agrees the taxpayer was overtaxed.


The Democrats stand squarely, and I shudder to think proudly, in the way of returning the money to those who have paid excessive taxes.


The Republicans want to pay these taxpayers back so that they will be in a position to hire people, give to charities and maintain a strong Nassau County. 


This is Alice in Wonderland. The world has turned upside down. 


The Republicans in the County Legislature are the good guys. My Democrats are the bad guys who keep refunds from those who can expand our economy. 


Anyone in my position should vote for the Republicans and remove the Democrats from office.


If I do that, I chance my hand falling off.


I think I’ll just sit this one out.

Michael R. Martone

Attorney at Law