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I prefer Republican leadership in Olympia | Letters
The stage is set and the top two candidates in every Legislature position are preparing their duel to to be elected to represent their districts in Olympia in the next session.
For sure, the next state Legislature has it all cut out for them given the tough way the last session wrapped up. The last state budget stood out as the key issue that worked up the members most, given that the state government operated on a deficit of nearly $2 billion.
The budget deficit was not new then, as the Legislature had dealt with a $6 billion budget deficit, mostly through numerous spending cuts within the last six months.
Now headed to the next Legislature in January 2013, the long-standing debate is set to return to Olympia. How do you deal with the state budget to avoid ballooning of the deficit or even balance the state budget after all?
The partisan wars of both Republicans and Democrats is set to take center stage as soon as the state budget issue crops up. Just as in Washington, D.C., Democrats hold that the best way to deal with budget deficits is to raise taxes on people, and mostly the rich, as is the case with the current White House.
Reducing spending and government waste to them amounts to gutting much needed help to the society's most vulnerable and the old and thus unacceptable.
Republicans hold that budget deficits are mostly common as a result of increased government spending and thus reducing that is the key. That you can actually balance state budgets without raising taxes — not raising taxes, but raising the tax base is their mantra.
As the broad base of Republicans believe, I strongly hold that balancing the state budget is possible without raising taxes on people. The state can cut government spending and government waste on entitlements without cutting the money necessary to help the vulnerable in our society and our old generation. Maintaining the needed balance of reducing spending and still funding the entitlements and other public sector areas like education is very possible.
As a resident in Washington state, I believe that the state government ought to live within its means. If all families do exactly that in this state, then I don't see any reason why our state government shouldn't do the same.
If there isn't enough money to do what is required, then there are various human ways to address that problem. First is to try to create more money to meet your needs — cut areas of spending or borrow to spend on the needs and pay later.
The first two ways sound very ideal and are somehow hard to follow or implement by most people. People as well as most governments tend to follow the easier route of borrowing to deal with the set spending and then sort the issue of paying back later on.
For sure, this is the easiest way to deal with money problems, but sure enough, this is not the best way to deal with problem, at least in the long term.
For most governments, this helps and seems to sort out the mess for the short term — but for sure, governments need not work short term or only for today, but also for the future.
With continued borrowing, governments build monumental problems for the future generations that shall eventually shoulder the debts.
As a person who is concerned with our future generations and a person who realizes that for the future generations to face the new universal challenges positively, then they ought not get dragged down by the past of unpaid debts and deficits, but ought to draw strength from growth, prosperity and surpluses of today's generation.
As a concerned citizen of Washington state, I wish to ask our new Legislature and mostly Republicans to live true by their mantra. Balance the state budget by pushing for reduced government spending and cutting revenue waste without raising taxes and work to broaden the tax base so as to increase revenues to pay for required entitlements and significant public services such as education and infrastructure.
Broadening the tax base calls for creation of opportunities to get more people to work. These means that the state government must reduce its size significantly, get rid of unnecessary regulations and give citizens more room to build businesses, innovate and prosper.
All this is not easy, and calls for making tough calls and choices. But it must be done now if we have to deal with the ranging fiscal problem permanently. Like Washington, D.C., Olympia faces tough challenges in the coming days. Tough challenges call for tough leaders and only those willing to take the issues head on. Tell the people the truth and prepare them as you plan to move through the rough road ahead. This will be good for our state.
As a Republican party member, I believe that the GOP's current set of candidates go along way in understanding the issues that affect Washington state and have the strength and courage to take responsibility and make the tough calls and decisions to ultimately address the ranging fiscal problems as from January 2013.
As a resident of Federal Way, within the 30th Legislative District, I hold that the best leaders to send to Olympia as our state representatives are Linda Kochmar and Katrina Asay for the first and second state representative positions, respectively.
P.K. Thumbi, Federal Way