Letter: Consider my history with GOP, Democrats — Kaufmann Op-Ed · November 02, 2012
Candidate for State Representative
I want to first thank the residents of West Branch, Cedar County, and House District 73. It has been an honor getting to know all of you. Many of you have seen me at your doors, in parades, or at community events. My brother and I have knocked on over 10,000 doors and I have been to over 200 community events. I have poured my heart and soul into this campaign. There has been a deliberate attempt to paint me in a negative light so I just want to remind you what I stand for.
I am a small-business owner, a farmer, and have been a resident of this district my entire life. Growing up on a farm has given me many traits that I believe are too often ignored in Des Moines. Common sense, hard-work, and good old fashioned practicality are traits that are often ignored in legislating. My promise to you is to always be a bi-partisan voice of moderation and reason. No one political party has a monopoly on good ideas. I always say when you put the Republican idea and the Democrat idea in a blender, what pops out is usually better than either party had to begin with. Most answers and solutions lie somewhere in the middle, beyond partisan rifts. I speak from experience. In college I was the founder of the College Republicans at Muscatine Community College. I was also the co-founder of the College Democrats because I believed we were best served working together towards a common goal. I want to bring that attitude to Des Moines. I believe how you run your campaign is how you will legislate and you all have seen me campaign in a positive, bi-partisan manner. I also bring a unique professional experience to this job. Spending six years in the Capitol clerking for my Dad has gained me valuable experience in the realm of legislating. On day one there is no learning curve – I am ready to go to work for you.
On the issues I am passionate about education. Coming from a family of 7 educators I believe education needs to stop being used as a political football. Let’s fully fund our K-12, Community Colleges, and Universities and let’s do it early in the session. Local control is important to me. I believe education decisions are best made by the teachers, administrators, school boards, and parents – not politicians in Des Moines or Washington DC. Any decisions I make on education will be based not by what a political party or special interest groups wants but rather a reflection of the students in my district.
Fostering an economy that encourages growth is critical to me. A poor economy causes our children to leave our small towns when they finish school. I believe the key to our small towns thriving is to create an atmosphere where small-business owners, families, and individuals can feel comfortable spending, hiring, and expanding. A key component to this is ensuring families and small businesses are not burdened by the looming property tax increases. Property tax increases hurt small and beginning farmers, home-owners, and the small-businesses that create jobs and help our small towns flourish. I believe the commercial property tax rates need to come down. I am confident a bi-partisan solution can be met that gives equity and relief to small business owners while not crippling our local governments.
There are many more important issues to look at such as protecting our seniors, affordable and accessible health care, and ensuring our farmers are equipped for a global market.
I look forward to working with all of you on all issues important to HD 73 and I ask for your vote on Tuesday, Nov. 6th.