September 21, 2020 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Congressman Waxman Speaks At Santa Monica Democratic Club Meeting:

Often lost among the local headlines of development agreements, specific plans, or light rail expansion are big picture issues such as healthcare, international relations, sequestration, the national debt, and party politics.

Despite the respective issues impacting a national electorate, Santa Monica is still affected by the likes of Obamacare and gun control.

When the Santa Monica Democratic Club hosted Rep. Henry Waxman (Dem-33rd District) at its Wednesday night meeting, the Congressman discussed pressing national issues with local residents and city leaders.

Waxman visited Santa Monica on Wednesday on the heels of recent threats of a government shutdown in Washington,D.C.

During his 30-minute speech to more than 100 people inside a packed community room at the Santa Monica Public Library’s Main Branch,Waxman discussed Obamacare, sequestration, redistricting, whether the debt ceiling needs to be raised, food stamps, the Keystone Pipeline, climate change, Syria, and his stance on gun control in light of the June 7 shootings at Santa Monica College.

At the outset of his address to the Santa Monica Democratic Club’s members and supporters, Waxman wasted no time diving right into Obamacare.

“(The Republicans) want to put it off for a year and make it better,” Waxman said about House Republicans who proposed defunding Obamacare.

“This has not been the way they’ve conducted themselves when it comes to legislation to give people healthcare. Why should we put off a year for people who are waiting desperately for health insurance.”

Waxman also discussed how the Tea Party has impacted the Republican contingency in the House of Representatives.

“The responsible Republican Party – which has been a worthy adversary in the two-party system – has been taken over … by very extreme Tea Party people,” Waxman said. “Senator (John) McCain is shaking his head. Republican senators don’t want the party label destroyed by having them close down the government.”

A key issue with House Republicans, Waxman said, is some Representatives are only concerned about their respective districts.

“They have districts they have achieved through gerrymandering that are so safe Republican, their only concern is to make sure they can win the Republican nomination. They don’t care about Democrats in the November election, they just want to win their primary,” Waxman said.

“The result of that is they don’t care what happens to their party. They only care about themselves.”

The Congressman, who represents Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, and portions of West Los Angeles in Washington, D.C., also said the debt ceiling “must be raised.”

“Not raising the debt ceiling jeopardizes the full faith and credit of the United States,” Waxman said. “We have everybody around the world look to us as the solid investment; they can always trust the finances of the U.S. government. But the consequences are, if we default, … (creditors) will insist that any money we borrow in the future has to have a risk premium. We will have to pay more because we will not be as credit worthy as we’ve been in the past.”

Moving on from the debt ceiling, Waxman briefly mentioned he hopes food stamps are not eliminated and spent a couple minutes discussing the proposed Keystone Pipeline to bring crude oil in from the Canadian province of Alberta and into the United States.

The final issue broached during Waxman’s presentation was Syria.

“The president really shocked everybody with his proposal (of military action in Syria),” Waxman said.

Waxman briefly explained how Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad has reportedly used chemical weapons on his own citizens. If the reports were true, the use of chemical weapons – which Waxman said are considered weapons of mass destruction – would be a violation of international laws.

“In Syria, they’re having a civil war. They’re fighting against Assad,” Waxman explained. “Assad is a really bad guy. He’s used weapons he’s had at his disposal to kill his own people.”

In light of Assad’s reported actions, Waxman said President Barack Obama pledged “to do something about it” before turning to Congress for a resolution.

“It’s a mess.The real question is: how far do you go,”Waxman told the standing room only crowd. “If you start using any kind of military, what do you accomplish?”

Adding there was “enormous opposition” to Obama’s plans,Waxman said he was torn about his stance on the issue.

“If Congress rejected (Obama’s plans), what message does that send to Iran as developing nuclear weapons of mass destruction,” Waxman pondered.“On the other hand, if you take a step, you have to figure out where you are going with that step.”

Waxman said he finally took a position of advocating military action only after all other forms of negotiation and amelioration have been exhausted.

“There are a number of things you can still do,” Waxman said, hopeful a peaceful resolution could be reached with the Syrians.

After discussing Syria, Waxman participated in a question-and-answer session.

Some of the questions he faced included the future of Santa Monica Airport, whether assault weapons would ever be banned, and the development of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

A handful of Santa Monica civic leaders attended the Democratic Club meeting, including council members Gleam Davis, Kevin McKeown, and Ted Winterer, as well as Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District board member Ben Allen.

in News
Related Posts

SMa.r.t. Column: Spending and Pension Policies Are Undermining Our City’s Future

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Our guest columnist this week is Marc L. Verville. He is a native of Santa Monica, now lives in Sunset...

4.6 Quake Felt in Santa Monica

September 19, 2020

September 19, 2020

4.6 magnitude quake recorded Friday night By Sam Catanzaro A 4.6 magnitude earthquake struck the San Gabriel Valley Friday sending...

Edify TV: Miramar Santa Monica Redevelopment

September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

The Santa Monica skyline may look different in the future with a major redevelopment of the Fairmont Miramar Hotel &...

‘Fresh Prince Of Bel Air’ Mansion For Rent On AirBnb

September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

Today on Westside Cribz, 30th anniversary of “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” Airbnb is renting out the mansion for...

SMMUSD Kindergarten Enrollment Down 20% : Santa Monica Beat – September, 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * SMMUSD Kindergarten Enrollment Down 20% * As Covid-19 Cases Drop Will...

Edify TV: Sit-down Dining Safety?

September 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

Despite a recent CDC report stating the risks of in-person dining, many Westside restaurant patrons feel the experience is safe....

Sur La Table Closing Santa Monica Location

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

1930s building listed for lease By Sam Catanzaro Sur La Table, the popular kitchenware retail chain, is closing its downtown...

Death by Suicide at Santa Monica Place

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

Man dies by suicide Wednesday morning By Sam Catanzaro A man died by suicide at Santa Monica Place mall Wednesday....

Santa Monica Partners With Local Elementary Schools to Provide More Outdoor Spaces

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

Playground Partnership agreement goes live By Toi Creel The City of Santa Monica and local schools are working together to...

Charges Filed Against Man for Sexually Assaulting Elderly Victims

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

Juan Victor Mendoza faces four felony charges Prosecutors have filed charges against a man for sexually assaulting elderly victims at...

COVID-19 Continues to Decrease in County but Air Quality Reducing Testing

September 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

Smoke advisory in effect through Wednesday By Sam Catanzaro While COVID-19 cases continue to decrease in Los Angeles County, health...

Edify TV: Westsiders Working out Amid Poor Air Quality

September 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

With poor air quality due to wildfire smoke, local health officials are urging the public to avoid outdoor activity but...

COVID-19 Could Have Been in Area as Early as Last December

September 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

UCLA study reports significant increase in coughs and acute respiratory failure prior to first official cases of COVID-19 By Sam...

Willy California Wants Men to Rethink Their Closet

September 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

Local clothing line reimagines athleisure By Toi Creel With ranges in styles for men’s clothing from suits and professional clothing...

Police Searching For Robbery Suspects: Santa Monica Beat – September, 14, 2020

September 14, 2020

September 14, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Police Searching For Robbery Suspects * Should School Board Representatives Have...