To the Editor: Two years ago, our country changed course in a dramatic election characterized by bitter division and political polarization — described by Pew Research Center as “the defining feature of early 21st century American politics.
“In some ways, I’m running for the Vermont House of Representatives as a response. I’m a Democrat, but grew up in a Republican family in the rural “red state” of Nebraska. I respect people of all parties and believe the best ideas come from diverse sources. I hold to my values while seeking common ground and collaboration. These traits will help me to be effective in Montpelier, where it requires a team effort — and strong interpersonal skills — to get legislation passed.
I‘m mostly running because I care deeply about the Northshire, my home for 22 years. If elected, I hope to help move Vermont forward on the issues that impact so many of us. I’ll work on affordable and accessible health care, housing and childcare, and strong schools that serve every student. I’m also committed to protecting our environment and responding to climate change while creating a diverse “green economy” that will create jobs and attract residents.
Running for office has been one of the most positive, hopeful experiences of my life. I’ve knocked on hundreds of doors, and almost without exception, my Northshire neighbors have been welcoming and willing to talk. House by house, I’ve learned that political polarization will be healed one conversation at a time. It’s a grassroots movement, and I am proud to play a small part in it.Constituent communication is a high priority for me.
If elected, please watch the newspapers and my Facebook page (“Kathleen James for State Representative”) for a meeting in your town before January. I’ve pledged to hold regular meetings in all four Towns — Manchester, Arlington, Sunderland and Sandgate — and to publish an e-newsletter to keep you informed.Through extensive training with Emerge Vermont and my involvement with the Vermont Democratic Party, I’ve built a network of trusted colleagues — including former, current and incoming legislators — in the statehouse. I’m ready to hit the ground running.
To learn more about my background, my volunteer contributions to the Northshire and my endorsements, go to: www.kathjamesforstaterep.com.
On Nov. 6, your vote is your voice. Now is the time for new ideas, new energy and new leadership for the Northshire. Please vote for me in this momentous midterm election.