I was raised here in Philadelphia, the ninth of 10 kids in a big, Irish family. My grandparents were Irish immigrants; my parents didn't have college degrees. My dad walked the beat as a police officer. My mom worked as a restaurant hostess. But when we were growing up, none of that mattered. You see, we learned to love God and country. We learned that success isn't a product of pedigree — no, if you want to succeed, you have to give it your all, and give back.
For my brothers and sisters and me, this was the deal. But for so many families, this deal is off the table. Because, today, middle-class families aren't making a dime more than they were two decades ago in real terms — while costs have gone through the roof.
Here are the facts: We have the most productive economy in the world, but the benefits of that productivity all go to the top. Top executives used to make 30 times the average guy. Now it's over 300 times. That's wrong for families and for America.
The truth is that fear and anxiety reach far and wide across our country. Hard-working people feel anxious and insecure. Our choice is how we respond. And this choice is on the ballot in November.
Now, we could respond with more scapegoating and fearmongering. That's the tack of Donald Trump and my opponent Pat Toomey. Just blame the Mexicans. Blame the Muslims. Blame the government. Build a wall. For goodness sakes, the Donald even blamed the pope! My dear mother, God rest her soul, would be turning over in her grave!
And you know what these guys also say: "Hand it all over to Wall Street." Pat Toomey made his millions on Wall Street. And he's still selling us the same old trickle-down that benefits only the rich. Trust the stock market with your hard-earned Social Security, Toomey says. Trust the wheelers and dealers with your savings, and you will be living large, Toomey tells us.
But you know what? We've seen this bad movie, and the sequel. And the ending is always the same: Things work out for the big shots, and everyone else gets the bill!
Now, we also have a different choice. We can work together. We can expand opportunity. We can build on the strength of our diversity, and the diversity of our strengths.
My brothers are heavy equipment operators, a printer, an X-ray certified welder. And we know a great country doesn't just buy and consume stuff. A great country makes and builds stuff. And so as Democrats, we can — and must — work for good schools, and affordable college, and job-training that enables our families and neighbors to make the economy of tomorrow.
This is the American way: Work hard, get ahead. This is what I will fight for in the United States Senate — and this is what Hillary Clinton will fight for in the White House.
Thank you and God bless America!
Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160420/357779LOGO
SOURCE 2016 Democratic National Convention Committee