January 22, 2012, - 3:38 pm
After mooching at the public trough for more than a year, Congresschick Gabby Giffords will finally resign this week, a move that passed the “it’s about time” point long ago. I’ve written about this a few times (here and here), and several readers have noted that it’s better to have a liberal Democrat in Congress who generally doesn’t vote then an active participant liberal. But, as you know, that’s not how I look at it.
Giffords milked the system big-time. She remained on full pay as a U.S. Congresswoman, with well over $200,000 in annual salary and benefits, despite not being at work for over a year. That’s something that the rest of America would never get, despite paying for it for her. She also got the best therapy, the best rehab, the best medical care money can buy–something the average American will never get, even on Obamacare–which the hypocrite Giffords supported but didn’t make applicable to Congressmen like her (in fact, they will get far less of it under Obamacare). While she was on fully-paid leave for a year, she and her hubby wrote and marketed a book and did media appearances to promote it.
As I’ve asked before, do ya think you’d get to collect full pay on “sick leave” while promoting a book for which you got paid millions? Puh-leeze. Your boss would fire you and probably report you for healthcare fraud to recoup the money and benefits he paid you while you were working full-time for yourself on a book. And even if you didn’t write a book, after a few months, your boss would likely terminate you after you exhausted Family Medical Leave Act time off, and you’d be forced to pay expensive COBRA fees and file for Workers Comp or Social Security Disability. And, again, if you had the ability to write and promote a book and make millions off of it, you wouldn’t qualify for either. They’d laugh at you.
It’s well past time that Giffords resigned and focused on her health, rather than simply milking the system, as she’s done for the last year. I feel for her that she was attacked in the course of her Congressional duties and shot in the head. But she is a victim, NOT a hero. And she’s been using it to bask in glory and make money off your backs.
Again, I feel for this woman for the tragedy of being shot. She’s lucky that she survived and good for her for that. But it’s utter chutzpah to take advantage as she has off the backs of working-class people for whom she claimed to fight, but from whom she merely collected, while double-dipping with a book deal.
Yes, now an able-bodied liberal Democrat will replace her in a a special election, and it will be a vote for the wrong side on pretty much every issue. But I’m approaching this not as a Machiavelli-ette, but as someone interested in fairness and the end to Gabby Giffords chutzpahdik mooching.
Her farewell video on Facebook bore a classy message:
I don’t remember much from that horrible day, but I will never forget the trust you placed in me to be your voice.
I’m getting better. Every day my spirit is high. I will return and we will work together for Arizona and this great country.
But her stubborn clawing to hold on to the seat for over a year while she engaged in shameless self-promotion was not so classy.
I hope she achieves a complete recovery, and I wish her well in private life.
Tags: Congress, Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, Gabby Giffords, Gabby Giffords resigns, Gabrielle Giffords, obamacare, resignation