Thursday, May 06, 2010

Final thoughts

Over the past 24 hours I have been engaged in a lively debate with the energetic and active supporters of Claudia Wright, who is challenging congressman Jim Matheson.

I have been accused, as have many of Jim's supporters, of supporting him "only because Claudia can't win." In all fairness, they are right. I haven't given my reasons why I feel Jim has done a good job and why I will stand behind him in spite of the fact that he has not always voted "with the progressives" on issues that are important to many Democrats.

Here is my short list.

1. Jim voted "YES" to expand the Federal stimulus
2. Jim voted "NO on the Chrysler and GM bailouts
3. Jim is a co-sponsor of the Employment Non-Distrimination Act.
4. Jim voted "YES" to pass Hate Crime legislation.
5. Jim supports Embryonic Stem Cell Research
6. Jim voted "YES" to expand CHIP
7. Jim voted "YES" to extend Unemployment Benefits
8. Jim voted "YES" to increase the minimum wage
9. Jim voted "NO" to make the Bush tax cuts permanent

Jim receives a 56% rating by the ACLU. Hatch and Bennett receive 12% and 14%, respectively.

Jim receives a 64% rating by the League Conservation of Conservation voters. Bennett: 27%, Hatch: 18%

Jim receives 67% rating by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal employees. Hatch & Bennett: 9%

Jim receives a 30% rating by the Christian Coalition. Bennett & Hatch: 90%

Jim receives an A plus for from the Shriver National Center on Poverty Law. Hatch and Bennett: FAIL

Jim has also done a lot for my community. He supports funding projects that have a direct impact on the Iron County Children's Justice Center, the Family Support Center, Public Education, our social workers, police officers and other public servants.

Jim comes to Iron County several times a year and has always been accessible whenever I have needed to speak to a member of his staff, or even to him personally.

As for Jim's NO votes... all I can say is that 90% of the people within Jim's district do not support federal health care reform as it has been done (and whether progressive democrats like this fact or not, it is a fact). Jim voted the will of the people in his district. Maybe it wasn't my will or yours... but he was listening to the overwhelming majority.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget Jim's efforts to keep foreign radioactive waste out of Utah. Some Utah Repubs supported that, but many did not.

Annette said...


I am genuinely glad you are voting for someone whose voting record you appreciate, rather than simply for someone who can win. That's what this is all about.
To add to the list of Matheson's votes, however:

Voted NO on the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009

Voted NO on Energy Law Amendments (Cap and Trade)

Voted YES to increasing power of US spy agencies to eavesdrop on foreigners without a court order

Voted NO on timelines for bringing US troops home from Iraq, and YES on additional funding for the war without deadlines for bringing troops home (that's not fiscal conservativism)

Voted YES to clamp down on illegal immigration without creating any new avenue for immigrants to achieve legal status

Voted YES to the Central American Free Trade Agreement

This graphic is NOT associated with Claudia Wright's campaign but was pointed out to me at the SL County Convention, and I find it interesting--note that Matheson is a close neighbor in voting patterns with both Hatch and Bennett:

Emily said...

All I can say about the voting record is this.

We should all be dedicated and engaged in the redistricting discussions that will occur after the 2010 census numbers are released. the Utah legislature is in charge of drawing the boundaries for the 2nd congressional district... not to mention all of the house and senate seats in the legislature.

Chances are we will get a 4th congressional seat... and the current plan being advocated by Republican leadership is to disenfranchise everyone by splitting SLC into four districts... which is totally lame. Like-minded voters who are neighbors, who share communities, schools, and churches should be in common congressional districts.

We don't like how our congressman votes... I will maintain it is as a result of the district that they recreated for him. If we want representatives who truly speak for us, then we need to be vocal, active and out loud about what those boundaries look like.

I will say it again... if you want more progressive representation, then work to stop legislators from selecting their voters... not the other way around.