Letter to the editor: The reason I am supporting Herrera Beutler over Kent

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With respect, Helene Sulitzer needs to re-read my letter regarding Joe Kent a little more carefully.

Nowhere in my letter did I attempt to “discourage Erin [Van Natta] from expressing her political views.”  I merely tried to temper some of her optimism about how much influence a freshman congressperson has.  Indeed, I complimented her for her knowledge of issues, and was pleased with her passion when I said “not bad for a recent high school graduate.”  And, I completely agree with Ms. Sulitzer’s statement that Ms. Van Natta is “a young person (who) gave enough thought about her community to speak up.  We all need to speak up and encourage our youth to be involved in politics.”  Whether I agree with her or not, I welcome reading Ms. Van Natta’s views anytime.   

Furthermore, I did not suggest that as a freshman member, Kevin McCarthy will not listen to Mr. Kent.  I did suggest however, and do so again, that to the extent that Mr. Kent wants to act like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, he will find little success with Mr. McCarthy or other Republicans.

Speaking of AOC, as Ms. Sulitzer did at length, I should point out that what AOC does primarily is talk.  And talk.  And talk some more.  According to the nonpartisan Center for Effective Lawmaking (as reported by the New York Post), AOC is one of the least effective members of the House at actually getting things done.  Last April, the center published a study indicating that out of 21 bills that AOC introduced that were “substantive,” none of them cleared committee, nor were any of them passed.  The Post noted, “[A] Democratic insider who worked with her in the New York delegation added that ‘legislation was never her focus.  It was media and narrative.’”

If that is what Ms. Sulitzer thinks that Mr. Kent should do, i.e., make a lot of noise, we already have more than enough of that in D.C.  Jaime Herrera Beutler actually gets some things done, which is what the people of Southwest Washington need.  That was the point that I made at the end of my letter, and the reason why I am supporting her over Mr. Kent.

Rick Hauser / Battle Ground




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