Rep. Simmons: ‘None of these individuals speak for me’

Karl Rove does not speak for Rep. Rob Simmons of Connecticut.

(Neither do Howard Dean nor Dick Durbin, for that matter, but we expected that.)

Earlier today the gentleman from Connecticut sent this e-mail to two of his constituents.

From: “Representative Rob Simmons”

To:

Sent: Friday, June 24, 2005 12:27 PM

Subject: From Rep. Simmons

(http://www.house.gov/simmons)

June 24, 2005

Dear XXX:

Thank you for contacting me regarding president advisor Karl Rove and his comments concerning the 9/11 terrorist attacks. It is good to hear from you.

Mr. Rove’s recent comments that accused liberal Democrats of wanting “therapy and understanding” for the Sept. 11 attackers is the latest in the escalating partisan rancor that includes Democratic chairman Howard Dean’s criticism of Republicans and Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin’s comparison of the Guantanamo prison to Nazi camps and Soviet gulags.

None of these individuals speak for me. Sadly, the poisons of partisanship have all but destroyed civility and cooperation in Congress. The rancor and incivility in Washington contributes to the public’s lack of confidence in our elected officials. Fortunately, there is a growing number of like-minded members from both sides of the aisle that are less interested in attack politics and more interested in civil discourse and results.

You may be pleased to know that I have joined the “Center Aisle Caucus,” an inter-party group of House Members committed to working cooperatively to promote mutual respect and discourage personal attacks and achieving a more respectful and civil climate for conducting the nation’s business. The Caucus is the brain-child of U.S. Reps. Tim Johnson (R-IL) and Steve Israel (D-NY). To date, 36 members of Congress – 19 Republicans and 17 Democrats – have joined the Center Aisle Caucus.

Democrats and Republicans will always have their policy disagreements. And having a healthy debate on issues is good for democracy. However, the American people expect their lawmakers to disagree without being disagreeable. I hope more members of Congress will join me and Reps. Johnson and Israel in support of the Center Aisle Caucus in an attempt to reduce partisanship and make Congress a more civilized place.

Thanks again for contacting me. Your views help me to better serve you and all the people of eastern Connecticut. Should you have any further questions or concerns about this or any other issue, please do not hesitate to contact my office. Also feel free to visit my website at http://www.house.gov/simmons.

All the best,

Rob Simmons

Member of Congress

Second Distict, Connecticut

Major thanks to Mary from CT for getting this info to us ASAP.

While I obviously disagree that Rove’s remarks were equal to Dean’s rather general comments and Durbin’s statement of conscience in any way, I applaud Rep. Simmons for denouncing Rove’s attack on Americans nonetheless, and thank everyone — EVERYONE — who called or wrote their senators and representatives to bring attention to this matter. You’re all Happy Democrats to me tonight.

A.