The following is a guest letter to the editor by Gen. Jerry Cannon regarding Congressman Dan Benishek's opinion piece that was sent around to papers in northern Michigan.
"Throughout my military career, the one ideal - beyond service - that I believed in the most and instilled in the soldiers I led was accountability. You're accountable to those you serve and you're accountable for your actions. No exceptions.
As evidenced by the recent actions in Washington, accountability is no longer an ideal in Congress. I believe the recent op-ed by our Congressman, Dan Benishek, is a perfect example of the lack of accountability and service in our leaders.
In that piece, Benishek uses terms like "alarming" and "deeply concerned" regarding recent legislation that impacted Medicare. What the Congressman fails - or chooses - to admit is that he himself voted to not only cut Medicare, but vowed to do away with the program altogether.
Benishek voted multiple times for the so-called Ryan Budget, which would have dismantled Medicare and put seniors on their own to haggle with insurance companies to get coverage. This proposal, and others he voted for, would have cost seniors to the tune of around $6,000 out of pocket to get the same coverage they get now and would have meant no guaranteed benefit at all for hundreds of thousands middle class workers who are approaching retirement in northern Michigan.
Other times he voted to cut billions from Medicare in Washington, while now expressing alarm and concern at those types of cuts here in Michigan.
And as a candidate in 2010, Benishek said that 'Social Security and Medicare are bankrupt and cannot be sustained the way the are.' and 'I agree that privatizing Social Security and Medicare is the only way to do it.'
This lack of accountability and, frankly, dishonesty when it comes to his own record is proof that it's time for a change."
Candidiate for Congress