Not Impressed, Mr. Johnson!

Senator not exactly responsive to concerns about foster care system.

On May 23, I and stated that we need to write our senators to let them know about the issues. I wrote my senators very detailed e-mails about the issues with the system: the fact that children are falling through the cracks and that there are so many kids currently in the system, yet foster parents that cannot get placements!

U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson came back with the following response: (Now, remember, I wrote him about the foster care system)


Senator Ron Johnson <no-reply@ronjohnson.senate.gov> Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 4:01 PM To: Melissa Probst


Dear Melissa,

Thank you for taking the time to write me in regards to the federal budget and our nation's fiscal health. 

Our nation's fiscal situation is dire. This year alone, Washington will add $1.5 trillion to our nation's debt, which currently totals $14.3 trillion. This mountain of debt threatens the hopes and dreams of future generations. It is immoral.  It has to stop.  I am willing to work with anyone in Congress who is serious about addressing the number one problem facing our nation. 

Unfortunately, neither the Administration nor Democrats in the Senate have offered any serious budget proposal.  President Obama's budget for FY2012 would increase our already massive federal debt by $13 trillion over the next decade.  This budget was defeated in the Senate by a vote of 0-97, which was a stunning repudiation of President Obama's leadership on this issue.

The Senate, which is controlled by Democrats, has not passed a budget in over 750 days.  This is irresponsible and puts our nation in fiscal peril.  Until the President and Senate Democrats get serious, it will be very difficult to pass legislation that begins to put us on the path of fiscal responsibility. 

On April 15th, I voted against the Continuing Resolution that supposedly cut $38 billion dollars in spending, a small fraction of this year's shortfall of $1,500 billion.  It was simply was not adequate in addressing the problem.  Today, the federal government consumes almost 25% of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP). To tackle our debt and deficit, we must limit the size, scope and cost of government. 

Unlike most states, the Federal government is not required to balance its budget.  I believe a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution would help bring fiscal discipline to Washington.  We must also control the size of government by limiting federal spending to a percentage of our economy.  I recently co-sponsored the CAP Act of 2011 that would establish spending caps to limit spending to a percentage of GDP. 

These measures will require us to make tough choices and force us to prioritize spending for the first time in decades.   It will not be easy, but it is necessary. 

I believe one of my most important duties as your Senator is to listen to the views of the citizens of Wisconsin and, in turn, communicate my views. I hope I have accomplished that with you.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your concerns with me on this issue. I apologize for any delay you have experienced in receiving this reply. Since taking office in January, my office has received over 160,000 pieces of correspondence. We are working hard to respond to your concerns in a timely manner. Please do not hesitate to contact me or my staff in the future to share your concerns, ideas, or opinions.


Ron Johnson
United States Senator

Needless to say, I was not impressed, to say the least. I have left his office a very detailed voicemail and have a Outlook reminder to call them every single day until I get a response...a real response. 

These children deserve better! If you would like to stand with me, you can read more about the issues at by checking out my And you can  call Ron Johnson yourself at 414-276-7282

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Melissa P. June 10, 2011 at 02:16 AM
You are right Debbie. Probably doesn't have kids and when you don't have kids you just cannot understand. Also, if you have not been through this "lovely" system of ours and seen the actual kids stuck in the middle of it you don't have the fire to fight like some of us do. No child deserves to just be ignored, or even worse...failed by the system after them have been failed time and time again.
Endreah Stone June 10, 2011 at 02:37 AM
jdogmke - I hope one day your life and future is placed in the hands of someone that was a product of the foster care system and they decide your life is not worth the time or money for them to put any effort into. Your comment is the most jag-bag comment someone could write when obviously Melissa is just trying to be the voice of all the children desperately in need of help.
jbw June 10, 2011 at 11:03 PM
It is sad that the hodge-podge of jurisdictional bureaucracy wastes time and money and gets in the way of providing care where it is needed. Yes, we have enough resources as a nation to easily accomodate all the children at this point in time, but it isn't a priority to decision makers because they don't get any direct benefit from it. Politicians like being able to boast that they took action that stopped criminals or created jobs. Helping the needy doesn't raise campaign contributions. Ideally, we could remove some of the inefficiency and corruption in the existing systems and gather popular support for allocating funding. There would still come a time when there are too many kids entering the system to handle, and you would have to choose ultimately between compassion for the children and compassion for the other people in need. Real life is unfair that way. May you have the best of luck in your endeavors, regardless.
Melissa P. June 11, 2011 at 12:39 AM
That is true, but an adult can help themselves in some way or another. A Child is 100% helpless.
Melissa P. June 11, 2011 at 02:57 AM
I think we may have someone that cares. State Rep. Dale Kooyenga!


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