After sitting down with the two candidates for House District 25 the community editorial board of the Newberg Graphic was faced with a conundrum: on the one hand we have an incumbent, Republican Bill Post, who accomplished virtually nothing in the Legislature during his first term. On the other hand his opponent, Democrat Sharon Freeman, who although has some interesting ideas, basically has no prior governmental experience.
Ultimately, Posts experience in the Legislature, along with the maturation process that all legislators undergo as they settle into the job, won out and the editorial board issued a soft endorsement for the Keizer resident.
Thats not to say we dont have concerns that Post will continue down the same path he took in his first term of office – that of embracing his nickname of No Bills Bill and simply not participating in the governance of the state. He went as far as to tell the board that his two reasons for running for re-election were that he promised someone hed serve two terms and to increase the number of Republicans in the House.
Thats not acceptable – a state representative should be trying to improve the lot of his constituents and the residents of the state as a whole. Sometimes that means crafting legislation and championing it through committee and the House floor. There are plenty of issues in the state, some that can be solved by the private sector and some that require intervention by the state. That, ultimately, is what the Legislature is there for.
Were also troubled by Posts conspicuous absence from the northern end of District 25. We have only seen him lately since he mounted his campaign for re-election. Before that? Virtually never and thats troubling as Newberg and Keizer are the only cities of any size in the district.
Freeman, the editorial board determined, has a genuine heart for the people of District 25, especially those residing in Newberg. She is passionate about the issues and has some good ideas, but they dont appear firmly fleshed out yet. That and her lack of experience hurt her, in the editorial boards eyes.
Our hope is that she get some more experience, perhaps on city committees or even the City Council, then run for election to District 25 in two years.
Our charge to Post then is that he recognize that even though his party is in the minority in the House, he can still get legislation passed if the bills are of value (funding for the Newberg-Dundee bypass, for example) and he learns to work with the Democrats. Other state representatives are able to do it and so can he if he ditches his nickname and gets down to the hard work of governing.