Thursday, May 25, 2006

Breakfast with Senate Minority Leader, Mike Dmitrich


In anticipation of yesterday's special session, and the visit from Mexican President Vincente Fox, I decided that an early arrival would allow me the best opportunity for photo ops and a seat in the gallery. As I pulled up to the Capitol as is usual during a legislative session, cars were parked everywhere along the roadside. I was quite surprised when I was able to pull into the public parking lot and once again find what I call, "Rock Star Parking".

As I walked into the cafeteria I noticed that the building seemed surprisingly empty. I then walked over to the House and Senate building where I was again surprised by how quiet it was. I walked down to the House chambers and was greeted by a couple of my favorite green coats who explained that the gallery had been swept by security, and that I had to wait. I went to the House Democrat's office but it was locked. I then went up to the Senate Democrat's office which was unlocked. I walked into the quiet office and found Senate Minority Leader, Mike Dmitrich already at work.

Mike is a terrific person. He is the longest standing state legislator still serving on Capitol Hill. One of the reasons for this is because Mike is the "real deal". He has survived both the marginalization of the Utah Democratic Party, and just recently, cancer. My father, former State Chair Mike Miller, loved Senator Dmitrich, as do I. One of the reason for this is Mike's ability to work with anyone, and his commitment to friendship. When I teased Mike about being the only legislator awake, he laughed and explained that being from rural Utah he has always been an early riser.

Mike and I decided that breakfast sounded good so we walked down to the cafeteria. When we arrived a radio news reporter grabbed Mike for an interview, so I left to go order our food. Before I was able to order I found Mike was besides me, "He can't get his recorder to work". As we waited to order Mike expressed his opinion on what a great cook they have in the cafeteria, and how he is sure that she is under paid. I had too agree, my omelet was perfect as always, and I know that most state workers are under paid.

When we sat down the reporter returned with a working machine and conducted his interview. I enjoyed listening to Mike's interview. His positive manner and upbeat personality is exactly what Utah Democrats need. As Mike was finishing his interview I received a call from Democratic Party Chair Wayne Holland Jr., who within a few minutes was sitting at our table.

As I listened to Wayne and Mike speak I realized how grateful I am to our senate minority leader. So often we give credit to our lone congressman in Washington D.C. Jim Matheson, as we should, but I believe we should also remember our State Democratic Legislators who have held our State Party together through thick and thin, and who continue to fight the good fight on Capitol Hill for all Utah citizens.

Thanks for your good work Mike, and thanks for being a mentor and inspiration to me and all Utah Democrats. Your the best, especially since you paid for breakfast.

1 comment:

GeorgeMoore said...

I am a conservative Republican, but I REALLY respect Mike. He tries for the most part to work with people and is a genuine, good-humored, and nice guy. Some Republicans on the Hill would do well to emulate him.