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Forum: County Council and state Senate races

9:59 am November 1st, 2012

I have watched the Pierce County Council District 3 race from a distance, but after some recent comments in the press and mailers by the McCune campaign, I feel I must weigh in with some observations.

I have served with both candidates in the Legislature and have observed both over a period of years. I am frankly saddened by the claims made that Jim McCune had procured the Bethel Skills Center construction. Jim was a member of the Capital Budget Committee when we funded Phase 1 of the construction; he voted no on that budget. I asked for the inclusion of those construction funds from the chairman, Rep. Dunshee, and it was only then included in the budget.

Marilyn Rasmussen and I fought for years together to stem the scourge of meth production in our community; Jim’s contribution was to sign on as a co-sponsor to my bill to reduce access to pseudo ephedrine. I had to work hard against my fellow Republicans to pass this bill to include the log book requirement that the police needed to prosecute drug manufacturers. Jim was nowhere to be found throughout this fight, but in the end did vote yes.

Marilyn is the one in this race that has consistently produced for our community, in school construction, road improvements, public safety and many other substantial assets that we would have never seen otherwise. Marilyn has demonstrated the ability to cross the aisle and work with the other party to the good of those she represents. Her opponent sadly has been rigidly partisan to the detriment of the community he represents.

The record is clear – not rhetoric, but accomplishment. Marilyn offers a strong record of achievement that her opponent cannot match. I am supporting her for the good of our community and the quality of life that we must improve. I know that she will put us before the moneyed interests and party officials. I am supporting Marilyn Rasmussen and ask that you do, too.

Tom Campbell

Roy

(Editor’s note: Tom Campbell is a former state representative)

 

I felt it necessary to respond to Mr. Harold Fish’s, er, strongly worded letter (“County would be ill-served by McCune on council,” Oct. 17) and address some of the points he made.

It is important to note that Rep. Jim McCune did not hold any political office in Pierce County at the time the dump was being considered and approved. He began his tenure as state representative in January 2005, by which time the question of the dump’s construction and existence was settled. He also has never received any campaign contributions from LeMay or its affiliates.

I agree that it was a mistake for those bureaucrats and elected officials to approve the building of the dump, especially over an aquifer. However, extreme rhetoric and baseless accusations that Rep. McCune wants to poison water and that he lacks compassion and understanding for the people he represents, does nothing to add to the conversation. Perhaps Mr. Fish’s concerns would be better heard and understood if they were not accompanied by wild accusations and personal attacks. We would all do well to avoid mean-spirited behavior and have a respectful conversation. Only then can we work toward addressing these concerns and come up with efficient solutions.

Skylar McCune

(Editor’s note: Skylar McCune is Jim McCune’s campaign manager.)

 

Opponents have stated Bruce Lachney (candidate for state senator from the Second District) “quit as an elected (Eatonville) school board member and never finished the job he was elected to do.” While he did resign this position, political adversaries conveniently do not admit that Bruce Lachney was appointed to the Clover Park Technical College Board of Trustees by Governor Gregoire, and an individual is legally constrained from serving on two boards simultaneously.  A gubernatorial appointment is a high honor, offered only to extremely qualified citizens. Far from being a quitter, Bruce was deeply involved in improving the Eatonville School District.

Bruce spent four years stewarding the Committee for Advanced Academic Achievement in this school district.  Under his leadership, there are now numerous advanced-placement and college prep courses, compared to only four prior to his tenure.

For two years, Bruce taught an afterschool science program at Weyerhauser Elementary School, Future Scientists and Engineers of America, where he guided students in reconstructing an experimental Wright brothers kite for understanding aerodynamics. Bruce also spent hundreds of hours volunteering as an Eatonville High School assistant baseball coach. All these activities were on donated time by Bruce- at no cost to the Eatonville School District.

Bruce’s other community involvement includes 13 years on the Northwest Trek Advisory Council, and an instrumental voice in acquiring $150,000 for the Eatonville skate park and $5,000 for Eatonville Youth Sports Association.

In their evaluation of the candidates for office, the Oct. 15 edition of The News Tribune makes the statement, “Bruce Lachney would make a fine state senator.” I urge all voters to look past the campaign vitriol and vote for a fully qualified, community and education-minded senatorial candidate, and that candidate is Bruce Lachney.

Lynn Butler

 

In the upcoming elections, voters have a lot to think about. Issues like jobs, the economy, and education are high on everyone’s list of priorities. And so should healthcare be on that list. Decisions made in Olympia during the upcoming legislative sessions will profoundly affect healthcare delivery in our state for years to come.

It is crucial that we elect people who understand the issues in healthcare, and who will fight for patient access to care, patient safety and to make health care better in our state. The Washington State Medical Association (WSMA) supports the re-election of Sen. Randi Becker. The physicians of the WSMA honored her as the 2011 Legislator of the Year, and she continues to be a champion for patients on issues affecting healthcare.

As the ranking Republican on the Senate Health and Long-Term Care Committee, she was instrumental this past legislative session in helping pass, defeat and amend numerous bills of interest to physicians and patients. She is effective at working across party lines, seeking compromise and finding solutions to difficult issues facing medicine.

We want to continue to make Washington the best place to practice medicine and the best place to receive care. Her leadership, energy and thoughtfulness on these issues will help keep us there. Please vote to re-elect Randi Becker.

Nick Rajacich

President, WSMA

 

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