Recently, a member of the local community reached out to me, asking about the solutions I see to the priorities that I’ve outlined. I’m going to spend some time in future posts digging into details of solutions that will effectively address our challenges, but I wanted to begin the conversation with this thought: none of the solutions to the challenges we face are obscure, and none should be “hard” to implement.
What’s difficult – and what I see as our biggest impediment to “better” – is creating the political will necessary to make meaningful change. I am unabashedly progressive, yet I value the marketplace of ideas and the process of listening, learning, and co-creating a better future. Today’s partisanship, coupled with the influence of special interests, unfortunately stymies this kind of thoughtful debate in too many cases.
As an aspiring social worker, I’ll bring the core values of my soon-to-be-profession to the legislature with a focus on how the work that I do enhances the well-being of all Maine’s people, especially in rural areas like ours. I would hope that this would not be a controversial position among my colleagues in Augusta, Democrat and Republican alike – after all, this is the primary purpose of government. But unfortunately, that’s not the perspective of the incumbent in District 144 based on his voting record in Augusta during the last session (see Vote Smart if you're curious about how you've been represented).
In my work in software product management, I learned early on to welcome ideas for new products and product improvements, even when those ideas didn’t necessarily align with my thinking at the time. I found the value in taking my time to consider these ideas, listening carefully to the people whose needs I was working to meet, and mixing and matching, blending and balancing the best ideas into a better solution for my clients. What I propose to do in the legislature is no different.
I believe that District 144 deserves a representative who will share a commitment to the well-being of the people for whom she works. Who believes in productive conversation, across party lines, about how we can achieve “better” for our constituents. Who will foster collaboration and consensus, listening and learning, rather than pure partisanship. Who understands that this is hard work, but is ready and willing to roll up her sleeves and get it done.
I hope to earn your vote with this commitment.