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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

October 24, 2008 at 5:33 PM

Governor’s race

Be progressive

Thanks for Andrew Garber’s story comparing Gov. Christine Gregoire and gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi on the environment [“Where Gregoire, Rossi stand on environmental issues,” page one, Oct. 22].

Rossi implies that Gregoire’s actions have been costly economically. In fact, she has led on a range of programs that will help, not hurt, pocketbooks. She passed the clean-car bill, which will save drivers at the gas pump; she signed generous tax incentives to help consumers pay for solar power; she passed high-efficiency standards that lower electric bills.

By encouraging solar and wind energy in Washington, she fostered new industries and jobs. By diversifying our energy sources, we are buffered from fluctuations in gas and coal markets. She prioritizes education and training for green jobs.

Rossi offers nothing to help working people while fighting climate change or dealing with traffic. His transportation plan would fail to relieve congestion, reduce pollution and provides no alternatives. It would keep us dependent on dirty and expensive oil for generations to come.

This state also uses a lot of coal power for electricity and might need to rely more on fossil fuels as we grow if we don’t act now. He ignores energy efficiency — the cheapest, quickest source of energy, which can lower energy bills while employing thousands of new workers.

Comprehensive programs and proper planning will help this state create jobs and prevent the worst of the climate crisis.

Rossi has voted against studying, planning for or taking action on climate change, which is a shortsighted, expensive point of view that would hurt Washington.

— Kathleen Ridihalgh, Seattle

A growing force

In a recent Seattle Times story, columnist Jerry Large cites revealing statistics from a recent study that breaks down the complex political demographic within the Asian and Pacific Islander community [“Growing clout of Asian Americans,” Local News, Oct. 13].

Large offers some advice for campaign strategists about the Asian-American community, which is one of the fastest-growing groups to potentially affect the outcome of the presidential campaign in several swing states. APIAs [Asian Pacific Islanders] have clout and are a growing force in the land of politics.

While some politicians have yet to fully realize the political strength of APIAs, Gov. Christine Gregoire has always acknowledged the contributions of our community. Since elected as governor, Gregoire has worked with us in the APIA community to make sure that all residents in Washington have access to quality and accessible health care by reducing language and cultural barriers so that individuals and their families, especially our elders can navigate the health-care system.

Gregoire recognizes that Asian Americans are not comprised of one lump ethnicity, but that we are made up of various and distinct groups.

As governor, Gregoire recognizes that the APIA community faces challenges with our K-12 and higher-education system. That is why Gregoire has been an outspoken leader in addressing student-achievement gaps, ensuring that education research includes the disaggregation of student data, attending to the needs of English-language-learning students and increasing financial support to give more APIA students access to college.

APIA voters are not only poised to play a pivotal role but take part in potentially deciding who wins in this gubernatorial race.

Gregoire understands that APIAs are diverse with varied views and she is effective in reaching out to our community.

Now is the time to assert our political force and deliver the APIA vote to victory for Gregoire.

— Livia Lam, Seattle

Political guts

The Seattle Times hit the nail on the head by endorsing gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi for being a tough budgeter and being able to sell a lean, smart budget. [“Rossi for governor,” editorial, Oct. 17.]

Right now the biggest issue facing our state, just like the rest of the country, is the economic crisis. We are now in a recession and as a sales-tax-dependent state, we are going to be greatly impacted by these tough economic times.

That’s why we need somebody in Olympia with a red pen who will stand up to the Legislature and unions. Rossi has political guts, and that’s exactly what we need to bring balance to Olympia.

Difficult times brings the need for solid leadership. This newspaper chronicled the work of Rossi during the tough times of 2003. What he did there was nothing short of amazing. It’s time to give him the promotion to governor.

— Sharon Sweo, Bellevue

Be consistent

Gov. Christine Gregoire has done a very good job as governor. She has been nationally recognized as heading one of the best-run state governments in the country.

I also believe there is an undervalued additional reason to vote for her. It seems very likely that we will have not only a Democratic national government, but one tasked with rebuilding a nearly destroyed national economy.

We need to have leadership that coordinates with the new Democratic national leadership and policies, which will include stimulus for infrastructure and investment in jobs in a new alternative-energy economy.

We have innovators at University of Washington who are potential national leaders in these areas. They will have the chance to shine when governed by Gregoire, who has already earned national recognition for leadership and knowledge both about economic potentials in leadership around climate change and energy-independence technologies. We need the political will to capitalize on a time for great potential.

Gregoire would be an influential partner with the national agenda for change. Gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi would claim he could be, but lacks both the right philosophy and the influence to help Washington state.

In times where a major response is needed to huge economic challenges, we need our state to team up with the national leadership.

If you vote for Barack Obama, it makes great economic sense for our state to vote for Gregoire.

— Kathryn Munson, Seattle

Don’t fall for magic tax mathematics

I’m voting for Gov. Christine Gregoire despite your predictable endorsement of gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi and Gregoire’s disappointing campaign.

Both your editorial and much of Gregoire’s advertising ignore her enviable list of accomplishments, ranging from early-childhood-education initiatives to Puget Sound cleanup. You also overlook Rossi’s impossible promises (an eight-lane alternative for less than the proposed six-lane Highway 520 bridge replacement), just as you ignored Gregoire’s fiscally responsible opposition to Mayor Greg Nickels’ insanely expensive Seattle-tunnel proposal.

Although I wish Gregoire had focused more on her brilliant first-term record in this campaign, I can understand Gregoire’s impatience with Rossi’s magic tax mathematics. I just hope your own tax myopia doesn’t condemn Washington state to four years of our own version of President George W. Bush.

— Peter Holmes, Seattle

Comments | More in Election, Politics, Washington Legislature

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