Letter: ‘I will be voting for Joe Kent for Congress’

Brush Prairie resident Bill Eling explains why he is voting for Joe Kent in the Nov. 8 general election

Editor’s note: Opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of ClarkCountyToday.com

While I am not big on slogans like “America First,” I don’t reject them outright. I think there is a moral justification for taking care of your countrymen before you take care of someone else’s countrymen. Personally, my priority is my spouse, my family and my grandchildren. I take care of them first. Who thinks there is anything wrong with that? On a national level, it’s the same. The priority should be our American family. I support Joe Kent based on this fundamental principle.

Bill Eling
Bill Eling

The real unanswered question is this: why does it seem that Congress puts American families last? Why does Marie Gluesenkamp Perez’ party imply that putting America first is extreme and, somehow, morally questionable?

No one is saying don’t be charitable. But who takes out a home mortgage to write a check to a charity? I don’t. Probably because it’s idiotic. But Congress has no hesitation in mortgaging your home and your future. Congress uses gimmicks like continuing budget resolutions to avoid making hard financial decisions and to keep money flowing to the same programs that are not remotely in the interest of a majority of Americans. Kent opposes these gimmicks.

I agree with most of Marie Gluesenkamp Perez’ economic and manufacturing platform. Unfortunately, a majority of her own party either vilifies her position as extreme or supports it only in words, not action. I have little confidence that by herself she can change her party’s America Last tendencies.

While her take on American manufacturing sounds good, I cannot reconcile her position on American manufacturing with her position on climate change. She places her hope on renewables. Renewables can’t sustain our non-interruptible power needs. If we keep eliminating the cheapest power sources, there is no point in bringing manufacturing home to America. You need reliable energy for manufacturing. Hard to make a widget during a rolling blackout. Hard to adjust your work schedule to just when the wind blows.

Then there is reproductive freedom. Whatever your position on abortion, the District 3 election has little to do with it. Due to false media reports and Oregon political ads, many people wrongly believe that the recent US Supreme Court decision outlaws abortion. Under Washington state law, you can get as many abortions as you want. Voting for Joe Kent for a federal office won’t change state law.

While I give credit to Perez for recognizing some of our problems, she misses the source of the problems. It is not that our “[r]epresentatives are completely out of touch” but that a majority of our federal representatives seem to be completely out of their minds [or refuse to stand up to the ones who are].

Knowing the source of a problem is a prerequisite to solving a problem. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez knows the problem but cannot admit that her party’s policies are not solving the problems and are making the problems worse. Joe Kent knows both the problem and the source. Of the two candidates, I believe Kent will fight to stop the bipartisan malfeasance in Washington DC. That’s why I am voting for Joe Kent.

Bill Eling
Brush Prairie

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1 month ago


1 month ago

Excellent letter. It is nice to finally see voices of thoughtful words and not just re-issued talking language from campaign platforms. Well spoken!

1 month ago

The comment is thoughtful (which I appreciate) but the logic is one-sided. On the one hand you say Perez can’t stand up to the democratic party while on the other hand you say electing Kent will not impact reproductive rights. Congress could adopt a federal law banning abortions for all women (many have said they want to). Kent will not oppose that. Of course, Biden would veto any bill while he is still in office but all bets are off after 2024.

No problem with the statement about taking care of family or country first. But it is not absolute as you suggest. If we truly are a city on a hill we have a moral obligation to help others. As a nation we are fortunate. We are not mired in civil war (although I fear we are close) and the majority of working Americans have a relatively high standard of living. So at what point do we, as a nation, say we have enough and we should help others? Kent’s view of America First is absolute. He is a nationalist and does not believe we should be spending money anywhere but within the four corners of the US. That is not the America I grew up in. I believe in helping my neighbors whether the live next door to me or a world away when they are in need. That is what made America great, before Trump co-opted the phrase.

Renewables are not the answer, but they are part of the answer. We should be encouraging a diverse energy portfolio for a number of reasons. Perez has not said anything about banning fossil fuel energy sources. She has promoted other forms of energy and frankly, that just make sense.

Finally, to suggest the Kent is within his mind does not seem be supported by his record on a host of issues. Most distasteful to me is that he does not think the individuals that stormed the Capital should be prosecuted (some of those individuals dragged officers into the mob and tased them). He views violence as a justifiable means to an end. How can anyone in their right mind really believe that (especially someone who has seen the consequences of violence first hand).

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