Letters to the Editor for July 12, 2012

Letters to the Editor for July 12, 2012

Ortman is a powerful voice in St. Paul

To the editor:

We’ve been residents of Waconia for nearly 15 years. Charles has served in the U.S. Military since 1987. He’s been deployed numerous times all over the world. Our family has faced many challenges during the Global War On Terror but our devotion to the Constitution and the American political process has been unwavering, especially since we have seen what tyranny and despotism has done to people in the Middle East and Central Asia.

In the Islamic World, the lack of political representation and the lack of reasonable dialogue displayed by the leadership of inexperienced zealots have created situations that always benefit the despots but never the people. It’s truly sad to know whole nations are so oppressed.

It is because we believe so strongly in experienced leadership and principle tempered with reason, that we strongly support our incumbent Senator, Julianne Ortman for the Minnesota State Senate.

Senator Ortman has been a strong supporter on veteran’s issues. She has consistently voted to stand for conservative values and at the same time, has explained clearly what those values are. She has repeatedly demonstrated that lower taxes and less government spending is in the interests of Carver County residents and the State of Minnesota.

She was instrumental in resolving the looming debt crisis Minnesota was facing, without raising taxes. Sen. Ortman earned the position of Deputy Majority Leader in the Minnesota Senate because she is reliable, reasonable and experienced. She is also the first woman in the State of Minnesota to hold the office of Chair in the Senate Tax Committee.

We elected a President with no experience and have watched for four long years as our gas prices, the national debt and unemployment rate climbed into the stratosphere. Why would we repeat that mistake in the Minnesota Senate?

Because of Senator Ortman’s leadership and experience, Carver County finally has a powerful voice in St Paul. Please join us in supporting her in the Primary Election on Aug. 14.

Charles and Naomi Erickson


Examining the North Dakota property tax vote

To the editor:

The North Dakota amendment proposal to abolish property taxes was put to a vote last month and was soundly defeated 127,320 to 39,136. It’s tempting to say that the people have spoken; that they are overwhelmingly in support of keeping property taxes. On the surface, the numbers could certainly be made to argue for that case, but is that really what these numbers mean?

Just as in any other state, North Dakota homeowners are rightfully concerned over the yearly threat posed by property taxes. It’s the only tax in support of their government that will cause them to forfeit their homes if they fail to pay it. After many years of being ignored by their elected officials, a handful of concerned property owners decided to take matter into their own hands. A movement to abolish the property tax was born.

In 2010, they failed to gather enough petition signatures for a statewide vote. The second time around they obtained the necessary 26,904 names. This small group then raised $21,760.41 in campaign donations and did battle against the combined forces of the State Chamber of Commerce, government officials and employees at all levels, major state newspapers, the Bankers Association and the Association of Realtors.

Citizens were told that local government would collapse if they voted for this amendment despite the fact that some 40 years ago the personal property tax was abolished in the face of equally dire predictions that the local governments dependent on them would be unable to function. Of the 531,415 citizens eligible to vote on this issue, 166,456 showed up at the polls. Those who believed the lurid headlines voted accordingly; 364,959 citizens didn’t vote on this issue at all.

So, what do the numbers really indicate? Do North Dakotans really want to keep their homes hostage to this tax? Where they stampeded into an ill-considered decision? Are they more apathetic towards this issue than anything else? What the numbers do tell us is that there is hardly a citizen mandate to keep this tax. What the numbers also tell us is that a handful of dedicated people can actually make an impact on the political landscape.

Charles de Rondeaux