Dear Congressman Vern Buchanan,
I’m a voter in your district, a US veteran and middle class American living abroad. Some of my ancestry came to America on the Mayflower and were pioneers to the West, helping to build America, creating great cities such as Dallas. Over a decade ago, I became unemployed and went to work in Europe instead of collecting unemployment checks or economy stimulus handouts from the US government.
In the last few weeks, I’ve been learning that banks have been refusing to provide me with services simply because I’m identified as being a “US person”. This is unreal. It is shocking. Today, I walked from one bank to the next, only to be told that I cannot bank with them simply because I am a “US Person”. I called the US embassy and they told me that they could do nothing because their hands were tied. This is like living in a fantasy. I’ve never experienced anything like this before. Years ago, when I was a child living abroad, I was loved for being an American. I was respected and I proudly told them that “I’m an American”. Today, they are telling me to go away because of US policy. I was advised to write to my representative and, well, that’s you.
I honestly don’t believe that you will take notice of this letter. I’m one of 6 million Americans living abroad whose vote is diluted among the 50 states. There are not enough Americans abroad voting in any one location to influence an election or catch the interest of a political representative. I’m probably the only American abroad in your district and thus my voice is lost in the popular vote. Nevertheless, I’m told that you represent me and that you are the only person who can make a difference in American politics as far as my situation is concerned.
Thus, I must ask you, are you willing to listen to Americans abroad? Can you hear our issues and concerns? Could you join the American Abroad Caucus? Or, could you at least modify your contact page so that Americans abroad with a foreign address can contact you?
I realize that your time and resources are limited, that your priority is the interests of those residing in your district and that you may have little or no ability to influence America’s foreign policies. Yet, if you could at least indicate that you heard an American abroad, you would do more for Americans abroad than many American politicians are willing to do.
Received a generic response not addressed to me, and with no mention of anything that I wrote, but that’s more than nothing.