Why This Democrat Is Running in Utah

Many people have asked why I am running for Congress - as a Democrat against an incumbent Republican in Utah! Occasionally, I'm tempted to answer this question with "if you know the name of a good psychiatrist, maybe he could help me work out the answer to that question", but that's only on the bad days. Here are the real answers:

1. There is significant misunderstanding in our state about what the values of Utah Democrats are - misunderstanding fed by the barrage of conservative talking heads and propaganda of the Republicans in this state. One reason I'm running is to be a messenger: to help show my fellow Utahns that the old-fashioned, populist values represented by the Utah Democratic Party are very compatible with our Utah values. As part of my campaign, we're distributing a little booklet I wrote titled Why Most Utahns Are Democrats (but just don't know it yet). So far, we've distributed almost 20,000 paper copies of the booklet. It is also available on-line at our web site.

2. Like most Americans, I am concerned about the state of our nation. We have run up three trillion dollars in debt to our grandchildren in only six years, Congress has failed to do anything to fix Social Security's fiscal problems and have substantially added to Medicare's financial crisis, middle class American families continue to fall behind in purchasing power and are losing access to health care at a record rate, and America is mired in a deadly, costly war where no one seems to be able explain why we went, what the heck we're trying to accomplish, and how we're going to get out. While all this is going on, our leaders in Congress spend all their energy in partisan bickering and childish name calling. I don't know about you, but I'm sick and tired of it.

We need to return to where we were in the Eighties and Nineties - when Democratic President Bill Clinton collaborated with the Republican Congress to pass consensus solutions to problems and government balanced its budget, when Tip O'Neill could visit the hospital room of his political opponent, Ronald Reagan, after the assassination attempt and they could pray and cry together in the spirit of friendship. My opponent, Congressman Rob Bishop, votes 97% of the time with his party leadership, flippantly explaining "Republicans are right 97% of the time and Democrats are wrong 97% of the time". This partisan, arrogant attitude from people from both sides of the aisle is the reason we are in this mess. There are a lot of Republicans with good ideas. There are a lot of Democrats with good ideas. We need to listen to everyone. Our inspired Constitution itself was a result of people who disagreed with each other collaborating and compromising to come up with what is the best governing document in the history of man.

I'm not a career politician. I'm an engineer. My life's work consists of solving problems; in getting people with diverse ideas to listen to each other, and use that diversity to come up with the most innovative solutions. The America people, including their leaders, are the most innovative in the world. If we can harness that spirit, there is nothing we cannot do. But we need to stop the bickering and work together. That is the talent I can bring to Washington. And what makes me a Democrat is that I will work for these bipartisan solutions with an eye to the working American family, with the conviction that our Congress must be wrenched away from the powerful, the special interests and the lobbyists, and be returned to the American people.

Please see my website for more information. Thanks for your time!