Have you sent in your ballot? Time to get it done! And help a neighbor remember too!
The primaries are on. For Jefferson County, there is a bit of confusion as the Republicans have vanished and “independents” are now the label that they are taking. But let’s look at some of the races.
US. House of Representatives. Derek Kilmer
Derek has done an admirable job of navigating the House of Representatives, which are currently controlled by a radically anti-environmental group of Republicans who insist on trying to overturn key legislation, or open more locales to mining, fracking and the like.
The League of Conservation Voters has a good overview of his voting record here.
Derek has teamed up with Republicans to create a bi-partisan Puget Sound Recovery Caucus, to continue to fight for funding to promote Sound cleanup.
While I applaud the idea of the Green Party coming to the field with Doug Milholland, I would not recommend voting out a successful and proven Congressman with an unproven candidate, no matter what his promises might be. If the current position was filled by an anti-environmental legislator, then I would be seriously considering Mr. Milholland’s candidacy. I attempted to get an interview with Mr. Milholland but apparently we were unable to connect in the last two weeks.
State of Washington House of Representatives. Steve Tharinger and Kevin Van De Wege
Both these candidates have proven themselves to support environmental law and policy. I have met them over the years, and witnessed them working. I fully support their return to office over any of the possible other candidates.
Jefferson County Commissioner District 3 – Kathleen Kler.
Ms. Kler is the hand picked replacement for a very supportive environmentally oriented Commissioner, John Austin. While I have only interviewed two of the other candidates, their lack of depth and experience in environmental issues, and their focus on jobs over all other issues, leaves me coming back to the fact that Ms. Kler has worked closely on a number of issues throughout the County as documented on her web page:
She is endorsed by the Jefferson County Democrats, which also means that she has proven herself adept at working with large diverse groups. With the County Critical Areas Ordinance up for revision during the next term, it’s important to have a clear environmental supporter on the Commissioners, along with the current two.
Public Utility District #2 Ken Collins
I think it’s time to swap out Mr. McMillan after the disaster of the switch over to the PUD. Low income people have had their power cut during winter, billing was poorly executed, and support of environmentally friendly power generation is put on the back burner. A lack of sensitivity to the customer permeates the current PUD, and Mr. Collins brings experience dealing with other power and energy companies, and also a commitment to help serve low income population, which comprises a large percentage of the county.