Opinion: Peter Welch, the congressman from Washington, D.C.

By Deb Bucknam

Over 40 years ago, I was a law student in a trial practice course taught by Peter Welch at Vermont Law School. In those days, Peter was a classic political liberal: He believed in the Bill of Rights, including the right to free speech. He was unafraid of people with whom he disagreed, and he respected dissenting opinions.

Bucknam Law

Deborah Bucknam

Now Welch has become the congressman from Washington, D.C. He has abandoned the liberal values he held so many years ago, and has abandoned the legacy of independence for which Vermont congressional representatives were justly famous. On any issue, his votes, views and actions are entirely predictable. He speaks in poll-tested jargon mimicking Washington insiders.

Here is what Welch is most concerned about:

Welch claims that thousands of elected officials and their tens of millions of supporters across the country are working to “subvert the next election.” In a recent Bennington Banner interview, he said that election subversion efforts are “now continuing in Trump-dominated legislatures” (whatever that means). Because of these “efforts,” Welch has repeatedly stated “our democracy is in peril” and “our democracy is at stake.” In the same Banner interview, he laid out his most important priority. He said, “The most profound question is: are we going to protect defend and preserve our democracy?” This is a radical view of the political electorate, reminiscent of the dark ruminations of Sen. Joseph McCarthy.

Welch is acting on his McCarthyite suspicions by working to limit the speech of those he claims are enemies of democracy — and to limit Vermonters’ rights to hear or read those voices — another favorite technique of Joe McCarthy. We are apparently too stupid or gullible to sort out fact from fiction, according to Welch, and the government must fix the problem. Last month, Welch put out a statement on his official congressional website stating “It’s long past time we created a dedicated government agency to regulate and address the wide range of issues raised by social media platforms. … That’s why I am working on legislation to create a federal agency to do just that.” Welch advocates federal legislation to regulate what Vermonters can read or see on social media. Wow.

Welch is all in on the Green New Deal. He couches his support for that radical piece of legislation, not in policy terms, but by demonizing anyone who disagrees with him. In the same Bennington Banner interview, he said “The questions we face right now are whether to fight climate change or go back to climate denial.” Virtually no one “denies” climate change. Instead, Welch requires us to embrace progressive solutions to combat climate change — or be labeled a crazy climate denier, to be dismissed and silenced. Progressive policies to “fight” climate change are already having a devastating effect on the poor, working and middle classes in Vermont. But because Welch has couched fighting climate change in terms of “us versus the crazies,” there will be no compromise.

While Welch adheres to D.C.’s slogans and fears, he is silent on the real concerns of Vermonters:

  • Inflation: Welch has said nothing about how he proposes to combat inflation. Indeed, he would be hard pressed to do so, because he advocates highly inflationary policies. For example, he supports the Biden administration’s limits on production of fossil fuels. Vermonters are feeling the effects at the gas pump, in their home heating fuel costs, and in increased food costs because of the high cost of transportation. Welch has failed to even address this growing financial catastrophe for Vermonters.
  • Public safety: Welch is silent about the epidemic of violence which is killing our young people. The only time he mentions “violence” is when talking about January 6, 2021, or “gun violence”, as if guns were the cause of homicides, not people. Criminal violence killed nearly 10,000 Black Americans last year—mostly young Americans in the prime of life. Welch is silent on this American tragedy.
  • Drugs: Deaths from drug overdoses in the United States reached a record level last year, to over 107,000, thanks in large part to the poison fentanyl coming over our border. Those deaths do not begin to tell the story of the devastation to families and children as a result of the drug scourge. No mention of this enormous problem from Welch.

Welch is worried about his political enemies. He is working hard to limit our First Amendment constitutional rights. He is committed to increasing costs and regulations on fuel for our homes and vehicles here in cold, rural Vermont. Yet, he seems to have no concern about Vermonters’ real issues, including inflation, public safety, and drugs pouring into our country and killing our kids. Welch has become the ideal representative from Washington, D.C.

Deborah Bucknam is a Walden, Vermont lawyer practicing family, civil rights, personal injury and employment law for the past 43 years.  She and her husband, Charles, have been married 56 years, and they have two daughters 13 and grandchildren, and two greatgrandchildren.  They have lived in Walden, Vermont since 1972.

Images courtesy of U.S. House of Representatives and Bucknam Law

10 thoughts on “Opinion: Peter Welch, the congressman from Washington, D.C.

  1. Congressman Welch used to answer my e-mails. And we did not agree on anything but at least he would respond. Not anymore, I have at least 3 unanswered e-mails. I guess he is too busy running for Senate to be bothered by the people that are his boss. As he said in one debate we had on VPR, When asked why he was running his response was”I like my Job”. Who wouldn’t at 185 K per year and Welch is now a multimillionaire. Also Peter is 75 yrs old, if elected to the Senate he will be 81 at the end of his term. Wonder if he will be babbling like Biden.

  2. “The most profound question is: are we going to protect defend and preserve (and win at any cost) our next election?”

    Well, Pete, that mean, old populist drive behind Trump – and the Silent Majority who just might vote for him to clean out the houses and the executive offices to spite you – “cannot guarantee it.”

    New blood was due for your seat 30 years ago: this fall, leading to 24′, look for a lot of dead Dem Prog chickens in the coops.

  3. Welch is a bought and paid for, yup he’s just a follower no leader………. pathetic !!

  4. While “woke” transplants and their offspring are well taken care of, real Vermonters no longer have any representation in Washington. We are probably too outnumbered to change that in November.

  5. Turns out Sen. Joseph McCarthy was right all along way back then with pointing to the fact that our government was riddled with Communist subversives. Mama, look at us now!!!

  6. Welch has become the true swamp creature, a flunky of the soros foundations
    and leftist social commies. Time to leave him in the swamp without a Vermont
    funded paycheck..

  7. Peter welsh is a career politician who wants to get to Washington where he can continue to do nothing for the people and everything for himself. Only time he is in the news is when he is up for re-election and he runs the same adds as he did previously. He will not make a good representative for Vermont and I can only hope people will not vote for him or Bernie Sanders.

  8. Speaking of “us versus the crazies”, there [can] be no compromise. Peter Welch is a follower of the incestuous progressive globalist cabal. And his wife, Margaret Cheney, is one of Vermont’s three Public Utility Commissioners. They are three of Vermont’s most powerful in-state energy lobbyists.

    But since when is conflict of interest anything new in this State?

  9. Welch has been heavily invested in the same big pharmaceutical companies that initiated the opioid crisis ravaging Vermont and the nation.

    He has no problem taking campaign contributions from the same Big pharma pill peddlers.

    Our southern border with Mexico is wide open allowing for heroin and fentynal from China to pour into our nation killing our young people. Welch is for open borders. I sure wish my fellow Vermonters would wake up and send Welch into retirement this November.

    Time to elect a someone who has experience defending our constitution and our republic. I am voting for Gerald Malloy for US Senate

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