Dugan Barr: Political Shenanigans

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I would urge all of the readers of A News Café to get solidly behind the candidacy of Rick Bosetti for Assembly. Before I tell you why I believe that should happen, let me explain a couple of things. First, I don’t agree with everything Rick has done or has espoused. We are not close friends. In fact, we can best be described as friendly acquaintances. Rick is clearly a conservative Republican whereas I am a progressive Democrat. I am urging you to support Rick because I think it is in the best interest of the people of this Assembly District to put him into office. Here is why I think that:

  1. Because of the open primary system, there is not going to be a Democrat in that office. The two candidates who won in the primary are both Republicans. Therefore, it is important that we pick the best Republican and not just throw up our hands because we have no choices except a Republican. (I’m sure that somebody is running a write-in campaign as a Democrat. The chances of success for such a campaign are best demonstrated by the fact that, as a former member of the Shasta County Democratic Central committee, I have not heard of the campaign.)
  2. We are much better off having a Republican in the assembly who is from a major population center, not from the fringes. Unfortunately, it seems once someone gets into office, their focus turned towards Sacramento at the state level and Washington at the national level, losing track of the people in their district except at election time. A member of the Assembly from Shasta County is going to have a lot of trouble doing that because he’s going to be constantly bumping into his constituents.
  3. Even though I don’t agree with Rick on many issues, I’ve come to believe that he is a man of conscience and character. As you may know, Gov. Brown recently signed a bill that puts a 1% tax on retail lumber sales to provide funding for a number of issues relating directly to the lumber industry. When he first decided to run for office, Rick was dragooned into signing Grover Norquist’s no new taxes pledge. That pledge is a particularly repulsive form of blackmail because any Republican candidate who refuses to sign it finds the power of the dollar pounding him into the ground. Recently, at a Tea Party event, Rick was asked if he would have voted for that tax had it come before him. He told the assembled crowd that yes, he would have voted for it because he believed it to be in the best interests of the people he represented in this district. Rick says there are 22,000 jobs relating to the lumber and sawmill industry in this district, and he believes this legislation will help avoid the loss of those jobs. Whether you agree with him on the tax or not, it is absolutely refreshing to find someone who’s willing to put what he or she believes to be in the interests of their constituents instead of kowtowing to Mr. Norquist.
  4. Rick is going to pay a high political price for this. I’m certain that various anti-tax groups who have nothing to lose will, in a knee-jerk reaction, oppose him vocally and viciously. Rick serves on the Redding city Council with Dick Dickerson, a man who was savaged by the Republican Party because he voted his conscience and for what he believed was the best interest of the people in his district. When you are considering supporting Rick, remember that it would’ve been pretty easy for Rick to have dodged the question at the Tea Party affair because the tax was already signed into law. He didn’t. He answered the question squarely. In the context of the politics of 2012, that’s pretty darned refreshing.

We cannot ask our representative to vote exactly as we want him or her to do. All we can ask is that the person we send as our representative listen to us, consider our views, gather as much information as he or she can and then do what he or she believes to be in the best interest of the people in this Assembly District. I sincerely believe that Rick will do exactly that. Won’t it be nice to have somebody in Sacramento who listens to us and not to whomever is in charge of the Republican Party?

Dugan Barr has practiced law in Redding since 1967. He has tried more than 200 civil jury cases to verdict. He is married and has five children. The offices of Barr and Mudford, LLP, are at 1824 Court St. in Redding and can be reached at 243-8008.

Dugan Barr
Dugan Barr has practiced law in Redding since 1967, primarily in the areas of personal injury and wrongful death. He has tried more than 200 civil jury cases to verdict. He is married and has five children. He can be reached at Barr & Mudford, 1824 Court St., Redding, 243-8008, or dugan@ca-lawyer.com.
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17 Responses

  1. Avatar Kathleen says:

    I appreciate your insight. It was well thought out and expressed. I too am a democract who is looking for a candidate who has our best interest at heart and a conscience, not their own political best interest. Seems that shouldn't be so hard to find but certainly is in this political climate. Bosetti has my vote.

  2. Avatar Steve Gaston says:

    Thanks Dugan, you summed this up quite well. I hope we're on the road to a political evironment where we transcend the notion of "best Democrat" or "best Republican", favoring the "best candidate" for office…

  3. Avatar John says:

    Speaking to Rick for five minutes you come away just liking the guy. I have never gotten that feeling from a politician. At heart Rick's a coach playing on our team, trying to do his best for all of us. No one can be everything to everybody.

    Bosetti has my vote.

    We have had enough of career politicians campaigning as farmers. Fool me once shame on me, I am not voting for the candidate whose "Ronald Reagan conservative values" were abandoned after the Primary and excised from his campaign for the General election. Who his changed his platform to "I want what you want".

  4. Avatar Scott says:

    Thank you very much for this, Dugan. A liberal who is completely frustrated at the moment and would likely have not voted for anyone in Bosetti's race out of principle, you simple, common sense argument has me seeing the error in my thinking. Far better to vote for the lesser of two evils, as it were, than leaving things to chance…

  5. Dugan Barr Dugan Barr says:

    The third numbered point refers to the "lumber and sorrow" industry. That is my computer deciding to get ahead of me and making a bad guess about what I was saying when I mumbled "sawmill", and I did not pick it up. Lesson: When you are using voice recognition software, read what you get for content VERY CAREFULLY.

  6. Avatar pmarshall says:

    Yes, Dugan, I was planning to vote for Rick, and for the reasons you suggest. I also have to add that the "Tea Party" has truly disrupted the Republican Party!

  7. I thought "lumber and sorrow" was rather poetic ;-). Appreciate your thoughts, Dugan. I like and trust Rick, too.

    • Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyde says:

      Erin, I can almost hear this song "Lumber and Sorrow". Some good fiddlers in the background. A Woody Guthrie style ballad.

  8. Avatar name says:

    A 1% tax on the retail lumber industry – just what they need to get ahead…

  9. Avatar Doug Bennett says:

    What is pitiful is that the Democrats cannot come up with viable candidates or support them once they run. It is not only pitiful, but has managed to put many citizens in the position of not having real choices. We can hope Bosetti will represent ALL of us, but when has any Republican elected to any office represented anyone but the corporate and business interests that have led us over the cliff to the economic low point we find ourselves in now? "Hope springs eternal." Why do we fools ourselves over and over again? Here is what is really sad: I, the cynical realist, hope you're right.

    • Avatar Ginny says:

      Going back to the past, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton worked for all the people. But, when one wears blinders one only sees straight ahead.

  10. Avatar Pamela says:

    Here! Here! Hear! Hear! Doug B!

  11. Avatar Budd Hodges says:

    Thank you Dugan for this informative report. I too, as a liberal Democrat will vote for Rick Bosetti for State Assemblyman hoping for the best in this his home district.

    I would also hope that voters in this district will do the right thing and place a vote for Jim Reed to replace the retiring, thank God, Congressman Wallace Herger.

    Herger, who's been in office much too long and with little to show of any kind legislation for the 2nd district, should be replaced by a good Democrat and that man is Jim Reed. Reed is not beholding to the teaheads who worship Grover Norquist and will work well with fellow Democrats and President Barack Obama.

  12. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyde says:

    Doug, the north state is Republican. I belive that no amount of money or effort will change that.

    Thank you Dougan for good advice.

  13. Avatar Robb says:

    Thanks for the recommendation backed by analysis. This sort of thing, supporting someone that you don't entirely agree with but that you respect, is exactly what we need to get out of our current mess.

    Kudos to you, Dugan, and best of luck to Bosetti as a candidiate and, if he wins, our representative.

  14. Avatar adrienne jacoby says:

    Thank you, everyone, for well thought out comments on a well expressed article. It is so difficult to wade through all the campaigning "static" that seems to become more and more prevalent each campaign cycle. Sometimes it just nice to hear what real people think! And, yup . . . I'm one of those: an extremely liberal republican! I just LOVE to skew the statistics!!