Democrat Kagi’s, Republican Schirle’s legislative priorities

Ruth Kagi

By Evan Smith

Incumbent Democratic 32nd District State Rep. Ruth Kagi and Republican challenger David Schirle recently shared opposing views on what they want to do if elected. Both have sent responses to a question about their legislative priorities.

Kagi and Schirle will meet on the general-election ballot to represent the 32nd District, which includes the city of Lynnwood, the town of Woodway and nearby unincorporated areas, parts of Edmonds and Mountlake Terrace, the city of Shoreline and part of northwest Seattle.

Here are the candidates’ statements in the order that their names will appear on the ballot and in the voters’ pamphlet:

Ruth Kagi (Prefers Democratic Party) —

The 2017 legislative session is going to be the most challenging in decades. We must find the resources to fully fund education, including early learning, without decimating the social services that support families facing serious problems like homelessness, mental health issues and drug addiction. Funding for these services was severely reduced during the recession and has not been restored. We are losing many social-service providers in our communities because the state’s reimbursement doesn’t come close to meeting the actual cost of service. One of my priorities is improved funding for critical social services.

Washington’s revenue system needs reform. In 1995, when we had a high quality education and social-service system, Washington State ranked 11th in state and local tax incidence – the taxes per capita that we pay. We now rank 35th — below Mississippi — and have the most regressive tax system in the country. I support closing tax preferences that do not produce public benefit, imposing a capital gains tax on the wealthiest 5 percent of our population, and assuring that large corporations pay their fair share. We need a more fair and progressive revenue system so we can rebuild a strong education system for Washington.

David D. Schirle (Prefers Republican Party) —

Logic over emotion? Please, all that can be asked is that we put whatever emotion aside and use only logic. REASON.

FACT: The State of Washington has been politically controlled by one party: The DEMOCRATIC PARTY for 20 years. My opponent has been in office for the past 19 years. She is part of the problem.

FACT: Sending the same “well intentioned” people to fix these problems will not work. They have failed. We know that. They know it.

FACT: THEY are proposing SOLUTIONS. Their solution (and it is always the same) is more money and bigger government.

FACT: More money, more government are not the solutions.

FACT: If we want to fix things, we have to change the people that we send to Olympia.

FACT: You do have a choice. With your vote you can send new people with different attitudes and new ideas.

FACT: That is the reasonable thing.

Evan Smith can be reached at

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