October 28, 2008

Last week I made a new on-line friend, Kathrine. She is a student at Colville High School , and I was her social studies report subject. She asked me in an e-mail to please describe what I am for and against, and what I would do if elected. She had to represent my side in a debate while another student represented my opponent. Kathrine excitedly wrote back to tell me she earned a 100% score! Here’s what I sent to Kathrine:

For and Against are pretty broad categories! I’ll give you a brief list and see if that works for your report.
  • I am FOR following the state and federal constitutions. These are sound, proven documents and we need to refer to them more often as we think about what the duty and priorities of government are intended to be.
  • I am FOR balancing next biennium’s state budget without raising taxes. The state takes in enough revenue, the problem is that too many promises have been made for spending it. This means clearly identifying the priorities of state government and being willing to cut out programs that are not serving those priorities.
  • I am FOR implementing the findings of the performance audits as identified by the State Auditor. There are always efficiencies to be found in any large organization, and we will have to find those as well to balance the budget.
  • I am FOR respecting private property rights as intended by the state constitution, and tightening the law further to prevent misuse of eminent domain.
  • I am FOR individual initiative and personal responsibility, and getting the government out of the way of a healthy and competitive business climate.
  • I am AGAINST social engineering through the tax system. Taxes should be collected in a fair manner for the purpose of providing just enough (and no more) money to pay for the priorities of state government.
  • I am AGAINST state sponsored gambling, but recognize that we have it and have to provide a fair playing field for non-Indian and Indian owned facilities.
  • I am AGAINST funding the renovation of Husky Stadium with public money. The Cougars are renovating their stadium with private money, as have the regional universities. Let the Huskies take the same responsibility (and I’m not just saying that because I’m a WSU graduate!). This is not a priority of government.

If elected, I will pledge to serve all of the people of the 7th District as a strong advocate for northeast Washington. Key issues I would like to work on are improving the business environment (including agriculture as a business), getting competition back into the health insurance market, pushing for an evaluation of the Growth Management Act so we can stop doing things that aren’t working to reach the stated GMA goals, and finding old and unnecessary statutes to clean off the books.