Letters 10/20/16

Courtesy BMoCA and the Museum of Broken Relationships

Short and sweet

Please endorse Hillary Clinton.

Thank you.

Sally Hart/Englewood, CO

Thanks for not endorsing Bennett

Thank you for recommending Arn Menconi for Colorado’s next senator against Michael Bennet. I have delivered letters to Senator Bennet monthly for 17 months now urging him to support liberal legislation and oppose the TPP. He almost always votes with the Republicans with his votes for the Patriot Act, NDAA, the Keystone Pipeline and the TPP Fast Track, to mention a few. He has just now said he can’t support the TPP unless it is changed, knowing full well that the Fast Track won’t allow it to be changed. He even opposes Amendment 69, universal health care, which would benefit us all.

Arn, on the other hand, opposes the TPP, supports Amendment 69, and pledges to actually work for the people of Colorado as an “activist” senator. He puts his money where his mouth is and has supported his own candidacy, unlike Bennet who takes big money from oil and gas. He travels the state putting his message out there and supporting us. Yes, he is our best choice and one I am proud to make.

Laura Avant/Denver

Vote for Paul Danish

I hope every Boulder County voter will visit www.danishforcommissioner.com before choosing our next County Commissioner. Paul Danish has experience at the job and has been living in the county since 1947. He has been both a Democrat and a Republican and was the author of managed growth in Boulder in the 1970s.

As you drive along the hundreds of miles of roads in Boulder County, contemplate the following: Is it sustainable or efficient to sit in traffic? Does starting your day and ending your day stressed out build a sense of community for workers and students? Are potholes simply a nuisance for someone in a car, but life or death to a biker? The population of Boulder County has increased by 25,000 since 2011. With no slow down in sight, another 25,000 people will likely join us by 2020. Paul Danish has a robust plan to maintain, repair and upgrade our county roads for bikes and cars, students and taxpayers.

Paul Danish will focus on roads and other local issues using the taxes that the county currently collects. He is an open-minded, can-do candidate, and best of all, none of his family members gets substantial funding from our government. Please vote for Danish for commissioner.

Jeannine Harrington/Boulder

Let’s re-elect Deb Gardner and Elise Jones

During the past four years, Commissioner Elise Jones and Commissioner Deb Gardner have taken on tough issues facing Boulder County. They have acted fairly, with a vision for the county and a sound practical sense of balancing the budget and getting things done.

Often, I see them out in the county, listening to many different voices, looking for common ground on challenging issues. They understand that they must represent the greater good, not just listen to the loudest voices for special interests. They each bring a unique background to this role, Deb as a former state legislator and accountant, Elise as the director of a statewide environmental nonprofit. They have used their experience on our behalf, whether it was stepping up to the enormous challenges of the flood or supporting a compassionate and inclusive human services plan.

During the eight years I served as Boulder County Commissioner, I saw how challenging this position can be. Both Deb and Elise have proven themselves to be extraordinary and visionary leaders. They have integrity. We are fortunate to have them working on our behalf. Join me in re-electing them to serve us for another term.

Josie Heath/Boulder

Ballot issue 302: Raising Barriers to Democracy

In this time of disaffection with government and the political process, populist ideas and candidates like Donald Trump are getting traction with promises of making broken things great again with illusory solutions. Issue 302 fits that mold.

What exactly is the problem that 302 seeks to fix? Issue 302 is like the barriers to voting set up in some states, ostensibly established to solve a nonexistent problem of voter fraud, but really intended to deny voters access to the essence of democracy — the right to vote. Issue 302 would take away our right to vote for the candidates of our choosing while pretending to address purported problems with incumbency.

However, we are not suffering from incumbency stasis. Election statistics reaching back almost 50 years, as illustrated in Richard Valenty’s June 24th Blue Line article indicate plenty of City Council membership turnover, and fairly high election success rates for first time candidates.

What will 302 accomplish? Issue 302 is a lifetime and retroactive limit, an extreme and radical level of restriction far beyond Colorado’s own state law. Like those aforementioned voting barriers, 302 will suppress ethnic and racial diversity on Council. Only rarely are minorities elected to our Council. When we are lucky enough to get a minority Council member who is highly valued by voters for the perspective they bring to Council and especially valued by our minority communities for the sensitivity they bring to governance, we should be able to keep them on the Council as long as they’re willing to stay. But under 302, that Council member would be term limited, forever. That disenfranchises voters who are already politically marginalized.

Another “problem” cited by proponents is the experience incumbents bring gives them unfair advantages in elections. But consider this: Maybe Boulder is the desirable place it is today because of the experience and wisdom of previous City Councils. Issue 302 will deny voters the right to choose that experience.

We already have term limits. It‘s called VOTING. Just last year voters turned out an incumbent and replaced him with a first time candidate. Open Boulder, the organization behind the ballot initiative, seeks to become the self-appointed gatekeeper to our democracy by limiting your candidate choices.

Be pro choice — vote NO on 302!

Leonard May/Boulder