Email #7, Subject: balanced budget amendment

You said in your acceptance statement that a balanced budget amendment is one of your biggest priorities. That’s fine by me. But isn’t that the opposite of what President Trump is planning? I heard he wants to cut taxes and also raise spending with infrastructure projects. Isn’t that the opposite of balancing the budget? You said a balanced budget, not tax cuts and not increased spending, was at the very top of your list. So how are you going to do that? If GOP leaders hand you an unbalanced budget, are you going to vote against it? You said you were going to “fight” for a balanced budget. Please explain exactly what that means.

Chris Gavaler

Email #6, Subject: Isn’t it working for us?

I read that Obamacare costs in Virginia aren’t going up like they are in the rest of the country and that, unlike in other states, no companies are leaving the exchanges in Virginia next year. So while Obamacare has problems in other places, Obamacare is working here. I understand the GOP has promised to end Obamacare, and if Virginia looked like some other states where companies are leaving the networks and the rates are rising too far, then we would need change too. But that’s not the case. Previously uninsured people are now insured at a reasonable rate that’s staying reasonable because the network of participating insurers is staying stable. That’s the state of Virginia. And you represent Virginia, not the whole country. Why would you vote to get rid of something that’s effectively serving the people your represent?  You should be a Virginian before being a Republican. Do you care more about answering to your party leaders than to your own district?

Chris Gavaler

Email #5, Subject: real patient-centered health care solutions

In your acceptance statement after your most recent reelection, you listed “real patient-centered health care solutions” as one of your top priorities. Do you have some specific solutions in mind? I don’t really understand what “patient-centered” is. Do you mean patients will have more choices? If so, great. But if patients can’t afford any of their choices, doesn’t that mean the opposite? Obamacare has been going for years now. Since replacing Obamacare has been one of your top priorities, you must have spent a lot of that time working out a better plan. So what is it?

Chris Gavaler

Email #4, Subject: 4.6 million?

I read California has 4.6 million people with Obamacare insurance coverage, and if it’s repealed they all lose it. Is that true? And more importantly, since you represent us here in Virginia, how many people in the Shenandoah valley are getting their insurance through Obamacare right now? You must have that number. I mean you wouldn’t consider repealing something until you knew how it was going to affect your own district, right? What’s the number and what are you going to do to protect them?

Chris Gavaler

Email #3, Subject: an immediate delay?

I just read over the weekend that you’re planning on “repealing but delaying” Obamacare? What does that mean? How can you vote to repeal something while at the same moment vote not to repeal it? I heard the “delay” will be several years? How’s that different from NOT repealing it? And yet I heard the repeal will be “immediate,” meaning, I guess, the vote to repeal it will be immediate but not the actual repealing? How is that anything but complete doubletalk? Would you please clearly and directly explain your position on Obamacare?

Chris Gavaler

Email #2, Subject: your salary

I read online that Congressional Representatives make $174,000. Is that correct? That seems like a hell of a lot of money, way way beyond the vast majority of the people in your district, myself certainly included. My wife pointed out that travel expenses would be high for a lot of Representatives–though obviously not for you since you’re within easy driving distance of DC. But there’s also needing two places to live. Do you have to pay for your staff out of your own salary?  It’s clear I have no real idea what expenses you have and which if any you receive additional money for. So do the math for me. What exactly do you make, in salary plus expenses, and, after subtracting money you have to spend to do your job, how much do you have left?

Chris Gavaler

Email #1, Subject: Obamacare

I hear a lot of talk about repealing Obamacare, but little about replacing it. Obamacare eliminated “preexisting conditions,” an offensive concept invented by insurance companies to avoid helping the people they’re designed to help. My daughter is 19, and under Obamacare she’ll be able to stay on our family insurance till she’s 26. Are you taking that away from us too?  The Tea Party has been using Obamacare as their rallying cry–even though it’s the same as Romneycare and the plan Newt Gingrich introduced in the 90s as designed by the conservative Liberty thinktank. I don’t really care if you repeal Obamacare or not–as long as you replace it with something as good. But what is your plan? How are you going to keep all of those newly insured people insured? The Tea Party gained power by calling Obamacare evil socialism. Was that all just cynical rhetoric and now you’ll just keep it and tweak it? Or will you actually take away all the real good it does?

As a member of your district, I need to know your exact position on Obamacare. What do you personally believe and what are you personally going to do?

Chris Gavaler