GUEST EDITORIAL - Incumbent's way endangers American Dream

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The trail to a better tomorrow is hard to find for many of us in this day and age. Yet, we're in danger of losing the American dream all together if we continue to follow U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers' lead. Look at the economic mess we're in, clearly government can do better by us in the 5th Congressional District of Eastern Washington.

I seek to represent you for the first time. The incumbent wants a fourth term.

Last Sunday's Union-Bulletin featured a column written by McMorris Rodgers. I appreciate the opportunity to present another perspective for I was at the very town hall she cited.

For the record, it was in Spokane and about 70 of her supporters attended. Facts are important in my world, as I spent a career in local TV news. People at the town hall heard McMorris Rodgers say she got into politics right out of college. So much for term limits. Not a word of that was uttered.

It's good to have a convenient memory when one is a professional politician. The incumbent is part of the political establishment that got us into the current mess. I'm one of you, now an organic farmer, a citizen of this great state who sees a need for common sense government with a representative working on our behalf again.

This contrast between candidates defines the threat to the American Dream. Ask yourself if you support the status quo or someone who is a fresh face on the political scene when we need it the most.

Which candidate knows you better? I've lived in the Spokane area for 25 years. My outdoor show, Romeyn's Domain, took me just about everywhere in Eastern Washington. I know the nooks and crannies, the people and the potential. During this campaign, I have been in all 12 counties of the district listening and learning. A representative needs to be in touch with the people or we loose the American Dream.

McMorris Rodgers talks again and again about a balanced budget. Sounds good, but have you heard any details? Ask her to explain why she voted for the huge federal deficits of the Bush era? Look in the mirror seniors; did you get a cost of living raise last year? She did. Members of Congress are free to turn down the money. We need a representative from Eastern Washington who understands people are hurting at home and is ready to lead by example.

The budget deficit is a danger to our national security. Let's make sure any new federal spending is offset by a corresponding decrease in federal spending. I'm a fiscally responsible Democrat, because we need to pay for our wants and needs. We don't need new taxes on the middle class, the monies are already in the system. Spending tax dollars wisely is the job of congress.

Beyond the human cost in Afghanistan, the borrowed money and tax dollars invested there are needed at home. Every time the incumbent votes to fund the war, she is funding nation building. We're using our dollars to build irrigation canals and roads in Afghanistan. I say we build the next four lane stretch of U.S. Highway 12 and phase two of the Columbia Basin Irrigation Project. That's infrastructure investment that makes sense for America .

We can get back on our feet again by producing goods at home. Only when we stop the exodus of jobs overseas will we get people back to work. When people are working, they pay income tax, pay into Social Security and have money to spend. That's the way to a better life for all of us.

We need representatives who believe in talking through differences for the good of the country. The incumbent votes 97 percent of the time with her party. Good ideas come from Republicans and Democrats alike. If we continue to elect professional politicians who put the party first and corporate profits before people, then the gridlock and economic mess we see around us will further threaten the American Dream.

Fortunately, there is another way to go. Voters have that choice in this election.

Daryl Romeyn, D-Spokane, is a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives.

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