Letter: State Senate seat for sale

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Editor:

As we head into the August 7th primary, itís important for voters to have the facts. Transparency about who is actually funding our race in the 1st legislative district is essential for voters to make an informed decision.

As of this morning, Rosemary McAuliffe has received $90,225 in independent expenditures from two of the biggest unions in Washington, the Washington Education Association (WEA) and the Washington State Labor Council (WSLC). Several other unions, including the WEA, funneled an additional $11,500 through the local legislative party to her campaign.

They are trying to buy this election.

Rosemary has a 100-percent voting record with the WSLC. For example, she was one of only 12 senators who voted against the worker compensation reform bill in 2011. That bill helped put our system on more solid financial ground and benefited our small businesses. The WSLC rated this bill as its highest priority to defeat.

The WEA doesnít publish scorecards but itís clear that Rosemary is their point person in the Senate. You need only look at this past legislative session to see the truth.

The charter school bill, and the teacher and principal evaluation bill, had bipartisan support in the K-12 committee as well as on the Senate floor. The WEA opposed those bills and Rosemary used her position as chair of the committee to block a vote. In earlier sessions, Rosemary used her position to not even allow a hearing on getting rid of the last in, first out policy for dismissals.

Regardless of how you might feel about these bills, we all should be worried about our democracy when one person can use their authority to subvert the will of the people. Bills that have bipartisan support deserve to be discussed and voted on.

Dawn McCravey has received 63 percent of her donations directly from the Republican Party. She has received another 13 percent from PACs, lobbyists and special interest groups. We donít know how Dawn will vote if elected to office but her funding sources are probably a good indication.

Dawn has declared that she is independent from the Republican Party based on her involvement with the North Creek Forest, yet I have not been able to ascertain her positions on policy issues other than education. For example, does she differ from the Republican Party on social issues such as marriage equality and womenís reproductive rights? She has yet to answer these questions.

In contrast to the other candidates, 93 percent of my donations come from individuals, 3 percent from corporate, 3 percent from special interests and 1 percent from the party. Our campaign is people-driven. I understand what everyday citizens are going through right now and I am running to help fix the challenges we all face, not to represent the interests of PACs or lobbyists.

The best idea for the state should always prevail, regardless of whether it comes from the left, the right or the center. If we are to make real progress in Olympia, we need leaders who will always put the needs of the citizens first.

Regardless of who you choose, please vote in the August 7th primary election!

Sincerely,

Guy Palumbo

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