LETTER: Show us what you’ve done, not what you’re going to do

Letter to the editor
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We have several talented people running for state rep. I am supporting Jenny Armini.

Platforms are ideas and promises. Remember the quote: ”don’t tell me what you’re going to do, show me what you have done”.

To distinguish among the candidates, I have narrowed it down to three things:

Do they know the district?

Jenny Armini has lived here for 17 years, and had a variety of experiences as a parent of children in the public schools, homeowner, volunteer, member of a church, active in grassroots organizing (founded Elect Blue in 2017).

Diann moved here 1 year ago, Doug moved here three years ago. Despite their talents and ideas, I don’t think you can represent a district when you are that new to it. Tristan has never been a homeowner, a parent, or held a full-time job, despite being born in the district.

2. Do they have the personality and qualities to work well with others? Do they listen, do they work as a team?  Has their life experience been as CFO or CEO, or as someone who works as an equal with others, not top-down? Have they had experience organizing at a grassroots level, worked with folks in Town Government, or been involved in community issues? Have they had experience working at the state level?

Jenny listens, works collaboratively, pitches in on planting trees, local elections, local overrides, and is a grassroots organizer. She and a friend recruited people to write postcards for the 2018 midterm elections, by going to different groups and encouraging/inspiring people to get involved. Jenny has a wide network and broad base of local connections from those efforts.  Jenny has worked on Beacon Hill, with a bipartisan think-tank that proposed legislation, with the Department of Revenue, with the executive branch as speechwriter for Gov. Jane Swift, on Capitol Hill as a legislative aide, and in a Planned Parenthood cinic. These experiences inform her goals and her method of working with others.

3. Do they have a strategy for coping with the demands of being a state representative, a generalist, and presented with many issues? A state rep. cannot always be the expert, with all the answers. A state rep is not a CEO or CFO, they must balance different demands/different constituencies/other state reps. They have to work WITH people, and make compromises. They are not running the show and telling people what to do.

Jenny has the willingness to learn, has built a network of experts, of local and municipal contacts, whom she calls on regarding different issues, to hear from local people about subtle problems or local twists. Jenny has the curiosity and humility to ask questions: of the environmental activist community, professors of Government or Public Health, local officials. I know this because she has asked me for information on environmental issues, and asked elected municipal board members. She has sought health-care-strategy input from Dr. John McDonough, (designed “Obama-care”), then discussed it with me (I am a retired physician). Please vote for Jenny Armini! – Dr. Eileen Mathieu, Longview Drive

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