MUST READ: Plain Dealer “Democratic Ohio lawmakers defend their middle class constituents”

Over the weekend, State Rep. Kenny Yuko and State Sen. Nina Turner, both of Cleveland, responded to Plain Dealer columnist Kevin O’Brien’s assertion that Ohio’s middle class will not be harmed by Senate Bill 5. Excerpts from the op-ed follow:

“In his Thursday column, “ ‘Middle class’ will be fine, thanks,’” Kevin O’Brien seems to ignore some basic realities. He claims that the middle class will be fine, but that won’t be the case as long as Gov. John Kasich continues to attack the middle class by making devastating cuts to education, police and fire protection, mental health services and long-term care for seniors, while giving huge tax cuts to the wealthiest Ohioans and to special interests.

“The middle class is the nurse who takes care of your parent in the assisted living facility. It is the police officer who chases down and arrests the burglar who broke into your home. It is the teacher who helps your child learn, grow and become successful. The middle class is the firefighter who rescues the family home from total destruction. None of these individuals is amassing great wealth from these public service careers. They do it because they want to serve the communities in which they live and make them better places to be.

“O’Brien further fails to acknowledge the fact that, while supposedly allowing communities to “decide how best to allocate public resources,” Gov. Kasich also cut local government funds from the state by 50 percent and took away huge chunks of state education assistance, putting the burden on cities and school districts.

“We have no doubt in the ability, industriousness or the willingness of our public servants to support themselves; they prove this day in and day out. We do, however, believe that this hard work deserves to be fairly compensated, and that they, like everyone else, deserve a fair shot at the American Dream.”

Read the full article here.

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