I read the comments from Coralee and Chad Taylor on July 30 in which they described their work with The Chronicle and their simple statement of gratitude to Jenifer LaFromboise Falcon for her decision to help. It made me think about all the times I should have thanked someone, but didn't. And the first will be a thank you to the Taylors for continuing to publish The Chronicle.
Last week, the Lewis County Republicans had their annual picnic and the attendance was stupendous, far larger than expected and filled with optimism and joyfulness.
Our 19th and 20th District state representatives were there as well as Sen. John Braun, commissioners and other county officials. Almost all of them got to speak for a few minutes and all of them received enthusiastic applause. This year, the legislators faced a depressing Democratic majority, but they went every day of the term anyhow to fight for whatever they could get. I've thought so many times that I should have written or called just to thank them, but time gets away. I thank them now and hope they heard the thanks in the cheers and conversations at the picnic.
We heard Joe Kent, who is very successfully running against Jaime Herrera Beutler. There was an ocean of red Joe Kent T-shirts in the audience. He used his allotted minutes to rattle off his agenda for when he joins the majority Republican House in 2022: impeach Kamala and Joe, take back our businesses from China, close the border, use the federal government to prosecute crimes by members of antifa and Black Lives Matter, fix our schools, make the top 25 billionaires pay taxes and break up big tech. I am thankful for Joe's commitment to restoring America's strength.
And finally, I was grateful to learn there is a viable contender against Sen. Patty Murray, Tiffany Smiley. Tiffany grew up as a country girl from Pasco, earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing, and married Scotty Smiley, a service member. In April 2005, she received a phone call saying Scotty was injured in a suicide car bomb and wasn't expected to survive. She was asked to sign papers for him to be involuntarily discharged, but refused. She fought the VA and won. Scotty spent 10 more years as the first legally blind officer on active duty. During her fight, she worked with President Trump on VA reform and VA CHOICE (veteran care in civilian facilities). She has already received over $1 million in campaign contributions in three months, 80% of it from all 39 counties in Washington.
So I'm grateful that there are people like our legislators and new candidates who love America and have the strength to go into politics to restore what's decent and good. And I'm thankful for a place where I can have my opinions published so local news is shared. As Tiffany said, we all need to work together to breathe truth, hope and life back into Washington.