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Let's elect someone who listens | LETTER TO THE EDITOR
To the editor:
I'm confounded by the press coverage of the so-called Tea Party. It just doesn't seem to make sense.
For instance, most of the national debt has been created by Republicans like W and Reagan, but they blame Congressman Larsen and Senator Murray? Hey, both Larsen and Murray voted against the invasion of Iraq, which added $1 trillion to the national debt and which I'm guessing most members of the Tea Party vehemently supported.
And, then there is our medical system. It is indisputable that, as previously constituted, it covered the least number of citizens and cost the most - when compared with government plans in every other developed country. But changing it was Satanic and Obama is the devil?
Yet I've learned that you can't let other people (like journalists) get your reality for you, so I attended a candidates forum at the new Unitarian church to judge for myself the most prominent local Tea Party leader, Kelly Emerson, who wants to be county commissioner.
You have to give Emerson credit, she's no shrinking violet. No, she's loud, clear and angry.
And her message is clear: "Reduce taxes spent on mental health. Reduce taxes spent on conservation futures, greenbelts and beach access." At the church in the back were all the usual Republicans, such as Rufus Rose, nodding their heads like they were on strings.
Lightbulb moment: Isn't the Tea Party just the rawest wing of the Republican party?
What a contrast her opponent, John Dean, made. Mellow, thoughtful, informed. But hey, he's been doing the job. He should know it.
But I also wondered if their biggest difference wasn't dictated by their backgrounds. Emerson grew up in Southern California, moved to Erie, Penn., then to Detroit and came here a few years ago for the political opportunity - it says this on her website - of being surrounded by like-minded people.
Dean graduated from a Catholic College in the Bay Area, came here 25 years ago, for the way of life, and was publisher of quite a good Camano newspaper for 20 years.
Now I can get pretty angry about government myself, but I know which candidate I want listening in Coupeville.