Lackawanna County commissioner still in ‘shock’ over shoutout from the president
White House reached out to county commissioner before Pennsylvania speech.
For Lackawanna County Commissioner Laureen Cummings, what culminated Wednesday in a shoutout from the world’s most powerful man began with a phone call from an unusual place.
“On Saturday, I received a call from the White House,
and the girl that called said ... the
president had heardstory and about was my very personal interested in relaying that story somehow to the public,” Cummings said Thursday, the day after President Donald Trump did just that in a speech on tax reform he delivered in Middletown, near Harrisburg.
“With us today is Laureen Cummings, a mother of four who owns a small staffing company that provides private nursing services and athome care,” Trump said, shooting a thumbs-up in Cummings’ direction. “Laureen says that if Congress passes tax relief and reform, she will be able to create more high-paying jobs for health care workers in the Scranton area.”
Cummings, who attended the speech with her son and listened from a reserved seat near the stage, said she’d recently shared her story — that of a single mother turned small-business owner — during a leadership meeting at the Republican Party of Lackawanna County’s headquarters in Scranton. From there, her story was relayed to officials with the state Republican Committee and, ultimately, to the White House, Cummings said.
“I’m still in shock, to be honest with you,” Cummings said. “I couldn’t believe that the president of the United States just mentioned my name in an address to the public.”
As the owner of Lorimar Home Care & Staffing Services, an Old Forge-based business that employs about 10 people and schedules private, in-home visits with nursing staff, Cummings is confident Trump’s tax plan will amount to tax cuts for both employees and employers, allowing businesses to create jobs.
“The less money we are paying to the government, the more we are putting into increasing our businesses, and in the service industry that means people,” she said.
While Cummings didn’t get the chance to meet the president Wednesday, she said she appreciates how he
uses personal stories of real people to pitch proposed policy — pairing the message of tax relief with individual examples of those who would benefit from it.
Being recognized by the president, she said, is an honor.
“I’m just a small-business owner from Old Forge, Pa.,” Cummings said. “It’s an honor. It’s definitely an honor, but I always tell people I do the best I can to follow what God’s plan is for me, but miracles do happen apparently, and that was one that I think is a miracle. I’m very honored and grateful for the opportunity, and I hope more people get to be heard like that as well.” Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9141; @jhorvathTT on Twitter
‘I’m still in shock, to be honest with you. I couldn’t believe that the president of the United States just mentioned my name in an address.’ Laureen Cummings, Lackawanna County commissioner