Before they tell you what they’ll do, ask them what they’ve done.  Have you ever heard that before?  It’s an old adage that to me, in this current political environment, sums up what we all should be doing.

Now that we are 40 days away from Judgment Day, Nov. 2, it is vitally important that every New Yorker get educated about her/his elected official and what they accomplished this past year.  Notice that I said what they accomplished?  I am trying to be more positive.  You see, I think that we did a good job of pushing back this year and as a result we saw some positive work done by both houses and both parties.  But so much more could have been accomplished if the political will existed to get it done.

Over the next six weeks you are going to be inundated with mail, radio and television ads from elected officials telling you what they think you want to hear.  But please do me a favor…dig a little bit deeper.  Find out if what they are telling you is true.  How can you do that? Well, you can start by reviewing our scorecards at www.unshackleupstate.com/scorecard-new.  If you want to look at other scorecards/voter guides, you can find more at http://www.nfib.com/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=db5oIxzI99E%3d&tabid=1038 or http://www.bcnys.org/voter-guide/

2010 is such a critical year for all of us that pay taxes in New York.  In the last 2 years we have seen state spending increase by 12 percent and we’ve been hit with more than $9.2 billion in new taxes and fees.  That includes increases to your driver’s license fees, car registration fees, a reinstatement of the sales tax on some clothing and shoes, and numerous other nickel-and-dime hits to your pocketbook.  And don’t even think about going out for a bottle of beer or a glass of wine… that too will cost you more.

So I ask, when is it enough?  When will we stop bearing one of the highest tax burdens in the country?  When will our elected officials start representing us…the taxpayers?  The answer is simple and at your fingertips…you must get educated and you MUST VOTE.

When you get that piece of mail or hear that radio or TV ad or when you meet the candidate directly, remember this:  Before they tell you what they’ll do… ask them what they’ve done.  Don’t think that what you are hearing is correct or accurate.  Get educated.  And if you don’t get a good enough answer, then don’t give them your vote.