With these votes, they turned their backs on the poor

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As a youngster in the 1960s, I was inspired by John Kennedy's book "Profiles in Courage," about congressmen in our history who bravely put public service and the good of the nation before petty politics.

As an adult all these years later, I am outraged to see just the opposite right here in our community. On Sept. 19, Western Pennsylvania congressmen Tim Murphy, Keith Rothfus and Mike Kelly all voted to take $40 billion in food out of the mouths of hungry Americans over the next decade to score political points and to remain "loyal" to their Republican Party leadership ("House Votes to Cut $4 Billion a Year From Food Stamps," Sept. 20) At a time of persistent high unemployment, they blame the victims of our dismal economy.

We salute Pennsylvania congressmen Patrick Meehan and Mike Fitzpatrick who stood up for people in need and crossed party lines to vote "No" on this bill.

But for Reps. Murphy, Rothfus and Kelly, it is truly a "profile in cowardice." They should be ashamed of themselves, voting to kick roughly 4 million people -- including children -- off of food stamps in their time of need. Each of them claims to be a man of faith, but I can't recall which religion teaches us to turn our backs on our poor neighbors.

KEN REGAL
Executive Director
Just Harvest: A Center for Action Against Hunger
South Side


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