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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

October 20, 2008 at 4:21 PM

Times’ Rossi endorsement

Erika Shultz / The Seattle Times

Gov. Christine Gregoire acknowledges the crowd as she arrives at Sen. Joe Biden’s appearance at Tacoma’s Cheney Stadium Sunday.

Drinking the GOP Kool-Aid

Editor, The Times:

The Times has obviously been drinking the GOP (please don’t call it Republican) Kool-Aid [“Dino Rossi for governor,” Times, editorial, Oct. 19].

By electing gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi, their endorsement suggests, Washingtonians can have everything Rossi says his opponent cannot deliver: a strong economy, good schools, less traffic, lower property taxes, small business growth, sex-offender-free streets and the return of the Sonics.

We needn’t worry our heads about trivial issues like stem-cell research, access to contraception or a woman’s right to choose, because they have nothing whatsoever to do with the states — the U.S. Supreme Court has seen to that.

By voting Gov. Christine Gregoire out of office, we can also help the Building Industry Association of Washington’s well-funded dream of unencumbered development — no pesky environmental regulations to bother with.

And to think, we can have all this for free because Rossi will never raise our taxes! I feel better already.

— Maggie Harada, Woodinville

Misleading and reprehensible

Like other law-enforcement officials around the state, I am outraged and offended by the latest ads in the governor’s race.

The ads blaming Gov. Christine Gregoire for 1,300 homeless sex offenders represent some of the most misleading and reprehensible political attacks I have ever seen. In truth, Gregoire has done more to track and hold sex offenders accountable than any other governor during my lifetime. In fact, the number of missing registered sex offenders has dropped by more than 300 during her tenure.

As a legislator, I worked with Gregoire to pass HB 2407 to put in place GPS monitoring for the worst sex offenders. This was just one out of more than 25 sex-offender laws that the governor signed during her first term, and that doesn’t even include the creation of Operation Crackdown, a new program to track and punish sex offenders who fail to register.

As a sheriff, I will personally attest to Gregoire’s dedication to public safety and tell you that she is the best partner the law-enforcement community has ever had in the governor’s office. Those who care about the safety of our communities would be unwise not to re-elect her.

— John Lovick, Mill Creek

We can’t afford more of the same

Four years of failed leadership in Olympia has left our state in a hurting and vulnerable position for these impending economic hard times. We need a leader who looks to the future and makes decisions that will help the state, with a long-term perspective preparing for good economic times and bad.

Gov. Christine Gregoire has done nothing but tax and spend since she’s been in office and quite frankly I am very mad. The people of this state can’t afford another four years of reckless behavior. Yes she may have given funding in large quantities to more agencies, programs and public works but she did so with the notion that the economy would never slow down. Because of her reckless spending we are now facing the largest budget deficit in state history, $3.2 billion, and if elected again she will raise our taxes to try to fix it.

What we need is gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi and his business skills to make our state government run more efficiently to save much-needed money and resources during these trying times.

Let’s face it, we can’t afford to pay more taxes, and each of us is buckling down and trying to save money. Isn’t it time our government does the same?

— Ian Peter, Bonney Lake

Just another Bush

The Seattle Times endorsement of gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi reminds me of a time eight years ago.

You endorsed President George W. Bush, the “compassionate conservative” then.

We have seen how “compassionate” this administration has been.

If elected, Rossi will not raise taxes, but he will gut every program that involves helping other humans that he can get his hands on.

Don’t be fooled, this is another Bush-type Republican.

— Jack Nolan, Shoreline

Not yesterday’s trash

I could not believe my eyes when I saw my newspaper endorsing gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi.

Have you forgotten that he is currently under investigation for misuse of [campaign] funds? Have you forgotten that the prime duty of Washington state is to uphold a solid education system? Rossi balanced the budget by cutting the COLA [ cost-of-living allowance] to teachers and forced us to keep teaching classes of 32-36 kids per class. What are you thinking?

Your reasons for not giving Gov. Christine Gregoire a chance to see what she can do in a recession simply stink. “Well, we’ve had the Democrats in power for too long so now it’s time to try a Republican…” “She promised to keep state employees health-care contributions at 12 percent …” That was before the economic chaos of the past few weeks.

She has proved to be a smart and fair governor and does not deserve to be tossed out like yesterday’s trash just because you want to try out a one-shot wonder who promises to balance our budget by cutting education and health care.

–Kathleen Koler, Lake Forest Park

Not again

Are you out of your collective, ever-loving minds?

Hopefully your readers will remember that you endorsed President George W. Bush — something that should give every Washingtonian pause!

— Ruth Quiban, Seattle

With his ax to the grind

I was disappointed to see your endorsement of gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi for governor.

I think he’s just a reactionary with an ax to grind, despite the carefully-crafted warm and caring facade we see in his ads, with not much to offer besides criticism.

For example, here’s what The Bellingham Herald said in a Sunday editorial after holding meetings with Rossi and Gov. Gregoire:

“… Rossi lacked specifics when talking about how he would tackle the future budget deficit. He promised that as governor, he would ‘open up the lid on the agencies’ and be able to look inside and find cost savings. But despite repeated questions, Rossi could give no examples of what programs or agencies he would cut in order to balance the budget. We were surprised.

“Not only is Rossi familiar with the state’s budget from having written the state Senate version in 2003, but he has been running for governor basically full-time since 2004. After he lost that year’s close election, it was obvious that he was planning on challenging Gregoire again this year. In all that time you would think he would have thought of some obvious proposals for state programs that could and should be trimmed.”

Gregoire has made progress in important areas, achievements the Herald editorial summarized well.

— Jeffrey Borsecnik, Bellingham

Do unto Washington what Bush has done to you

I am very disappointed with Gov. Christine Gregoire as she has not been sufficiently aggressive against gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi.

She had been doing a fairly good job as governor until the President George W. Bush policies, favored by Rossi, tanked the nation’s economy.

Washington, like all other states, have faced predictions of reduced revenues. The government’s decision to reduce federal money available to states has also contributed to our current situation.

It is well past time that Gregoire stand up and clearly confront Rossi and his allies about trying to glue her to Bush’s coattails. People need to know that Rossi will do unto Washington what Bush has done to the entire country.

And is Rossi really getting a salary from his own foundation? He really is a chronically dubious candidate.

— Marc DeMartini, Seattle

Rely on the facts

I expected The Seattle Times to endorse gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi for governor. After all, the editorial board has hardly made a secret of their disdain for the estate tax, and while not specifically mentioned Sunday, it truly was the elephant in the room.

What I did not expect to see was such a narrow opinion, seemingly without consideration for the accomplishments, reputation and conduct of the candidates involved.

To gloss over the topic of education with a single reference, “in December 06 Gregoire proposed a new two-year budget — it was a happy one with raises for teachers,” shows either a lack of interest, or a lack of understanding as to how important this issue is to parents across our state.

You would be hard pressed to find a PTA [Parent-Teacher Association] parent who doesn’t understand what a friend Gov. Christine Gregoire has been to public education.

To omit any mention of the ongoing investigation led by Attorney General McKenna into the campaign-finance dealings between BIAW and Rossi is puzzling.

But to ignore the controversy surrounding Rossi’s false and misleading sex-offender ads, which have infuriated law-enforcement agencies from Snohomish to Spokane, is unbelievable.

While Rossi may be the “best Republican candidate for governor in a long time,” he’s certainly not the best candidate for governor.

My hope is that the voters of Washington state will rely on facts to make their decision.

If they do, we’ll welcome back Gov. Gregoire for another four years.

— Diane Smith, Bellevue

Be careful what you wish for

The Democratic Party wasn’t given power for the last 24 years. The people of Washington state elected Democrats into office. It’s what’s known as democracy.

Rossi may be the best Republican candidate for governor in a long time, but he isn’t the best candidate for governor today.

The budget sets the direction for our state, and I can see why it garnered most of The Times’ focus. But we are not simply electing someone who can add and subtract; we are electing a leader.

Governing is about having a social conscience and a vision for education, the environment, health care, transportation and equal rights.

In an interview with The Seattle Times, Rossi said that he is not campaigning on the issue of gay rights or choice [“Transcript of interviews with Gregoire, Rossi on social issues,” News, Sept. 10]. Why? Because the majority of Washington disagrees with him. Rossi may not be running on the issues, but he will act on them if elected into office.

Finally, a word of caution: Change isn’t good or bad. On the national stage, the last eight years were nothing but bad change followed by worse change. Be careful what you wish for.

— Mollie Price, Seattle

How’s that working out for you?

I am disgusted and appalled, but not especially surprised, by your endorsement of gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi for governor.

Gov. Christine Gregoire has done an excellent job and ably represents the people of Washington.

Rossi is a fraud who deceives people into thinking he’s a moderate Republican in the Dan Evans mold.

However, Rossi is a doctrinaire President George W. Bush conservative who will not even use the Republican Party label on the ballot, preferring to hide behind the ridiculous redundancy, “GOP Party.” He has done this because his research shows that many people don’t know what GOP means.

As a part-time worker, I depend on Washington State Basic Health to cover my minimal health-care needs. I am very concerned that Rossi, in his zeal to do the bidding of the BIAW, and cut their taxes, will cut into the Basic Health Plan.

Thanks to Gregoire’s hard work, we have finally achieved legislation protecting gay rights. Look for “party party” Rossi to go after gay rights and roll back what we have accomplished.

It’s worth noting that The Times endorsed Former President Ronald Reagan in 1980 and in 1984. We are now reaping the harvest of his stupid “free-market” policies. You also endorsed President George W. Bush in 2000.

How’s that working out for you?

It’s distressing to see you support a man who represents only the most conservative among us and holds liberals and moderates in contempt.

You have been fooled, ladies and gentlemen, and I hope Washington state does not suffer too much as a result of your shoddy judgment.

— Marc Szeftel, Burien

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