Mike Hewitt has done an outstanding job representing the 16th Legislative District and has earned another term in the state Senate.
Hewitt, R-Walla Walla, is now in his 12th year in office. In those years he has proven himself a leader. He is the highest ranking Republican in the Senate.
In his position as Republican leader, Hewitt had a critical role in crafting a solid budget compromise when conservative Democrats joined forces with Republicans in the final days of the legislative session.
Hewitt is not paralyzed by ideology. He is a pragmatic and thoughtful legislator.
While Hewitt holds conservative views on fiscal matters, he is willing to put his political capital on the line when he believes a tax increase is necessary. Hewitt, for example, backed a gas-tax increase a few years back because he felt an upgrade to the state’s roadways was critical to the economic health of Washington.
Hewitt has been challenged by Scott Nettles, D-Waitsburg.
Nettles, who works as a corrections officer at the Washington State Penitentiary, decided to run because he feels Hewitt was not responsive enough when jobs were being cut at the penitentiary. Nettles, now in his third one-year term on the Waitsburg City Council, feels his experience with local government has prepared him to better represent the views of the people in the district.
We don’t see it the same way.
Hewitt is clearly in touch with his constituents. Hewitt was a strong advocate for expansion at the Washington State Penitentiary that ultimately saved jobs in Walla Walla.
But Hewitt is not blindly supportive of every proposal or project simply because it might mean jobs or other economic gain in his district.
The proposals, he said, must be necessary for the state and ultimately be a good bargain for all taxpayers.
“My backyard is everybody’s backyard,” Hewitt said.
From our perspective, Hewitt is taking the right approach. His efforts to trim state spending now so future spending is sustainable have been a boon to the entire state.
Nettles simply does not have Hewitt’s breadth and depth of experience.
Hewitt has served the people of his district and Washington state extremely well. We urge voters to re-elect Hewitt to a fourth term in the state Senate.