Portage County TEA Party
4682 State Route 43 • Kent, Ohio • 44240 • 330-474-3878 • 330-673-4672 (Fax)
February 28, 2013
Mr. Michael Gonidakis
Ohio Right to Life
88 East Broad Street, Suite 620
Columbus, OH, 43215
Dear Mr. Gonidakis,
Though we have not yet met, I am well aware of your organization and our group respects the mission of Ohio Right to Life and the work that it does. However, I am confused by your organizations aggressive support for the expansion of Medicaid in Ohio, after the citizens of Ohio overwhelmingly passed the Ohio Heath Care Amendment rejecting the expansion of government run heath care. An Amendment I believe the majority of your donors supported. I concede your right to speak for your organization, and to make your own decisions about where you stand on this and other political issues, even if we disagree. However, you cannot speak for our organization or our movement as you tried to do yesterday.
I and our organization are offended by the blanket statement you made yesterday that is simply not true and is insulting to the hundreds of thousands of Ohioan who are affiliated with the TEA Party movement. Yesterday you said “Do tea party leaders really want to say “To hell with these fellow Ohioans”?” in challenging our opposition to the expansion of Medicaid in Ohio. What TEA Party leader has ever said anything remotely resembling that? Where have we ever acted in anything but the best interests of our fellow citizens and our state? Our opposition to the Medicaid expansion is based on real concerns that this expansion will not improve health care for these citizens because Medicaid is already a failing program. Fewer and fewer doctors are willing to participate in Medicaid and adding hundreds of thousands of new patients will not make treatment better or more economical. Pretending that taking federal tax dollars for funding Medicaid expansion is somehow "free money" that does not eventually come out of the pockets of Ohio and other tax payers just makes your argument even less convincing.
Your statement is a false representation of what we believe in and why we oppose the Governor on this issue. You owe all of the good people who are part of the TEA Party Movement in Ohio an apology for publicly suggesting that we do not care about our fellow citizens when our positions indicate that we care more deeply about them than you and your organization. Despite your willingness to compromise your organizations principals based on the outcome of an election, as indicated in your statements yesterday, we remain committed to our principals and will continue to stand for free market health care solutions and the rights of individuals to make their own health care decisions.
Thomas R. Zawistowski
Portage County TEA Party