2018 is a time of choosing in Idaho. With an open seat for governor, lieutenant governor and the 1st Congressional District, we have real choices that will guide the direction we want our state to go.
We have a president who doesn’t wake up every morning thinking of ways to overregulate our states, and he’s put the pedal to the metal on the economy through deregulation and tax reform. The challenge and opportunity before us now is where do we, as a state, want to take it from here.
I grew up in a “suburbs” of a town of 300 people, watching my dad work all week -- and most Saturdays -- fixing cars to help take care of our family. Hanging out with him in the shop was my favorite thing to do. In his example I saw the value of hard work, integrity and service.
When the miracle of adoption brought our two children into our lives, most of all, I hoped Christina and John would inherit these same values from their Pop Pop. I’m running for lieutenant governor because, like you, I love my family and want the best possible future for them -- right here in Idaho.
I often joke that I’m married to Idaho’s greatest educator. The jury may have been biased, but the competition is over, and I chose her. I know from her experience, as well as the experience of our own children going through school, that education is not one size fits all, and testing is not always an accurate representation of a student’s skills.
The focus of our education system must be on mastery of skills rather than tests, and the focus of our funding must be on students, teachers, and the classroom. The focus of resources and responsibility must be local, with parents and communities choosing the best education system for their children. And we must practice what we preach, resisting federal mandates while making sure as a state we are not doing the same to our districts.
As our students graduate, we need jobs in our state ready to receive them. Too many families have stories of their children moving to a different state, not because they want to, but because there were not good paying jobs in Idaho for them. With cooperation and innovation, we can bring new investment to Idaho, creating reliable well-paid jobs for our students.
None of this can be done unless we, as a state, are committed to systematically eliminating the regulations that are no longer necessary. Innovative and creative solutions can solve many of the challenges in our state, without implementing rules and regulations that do little more than put pebbles in the shoes of average Idahoans.
Idaho is already a great state, with wonderful people. With the right leaders, the right priorities, and the right values, we can be even better. I’m running for lieutenant governor because I believe that our state can be an example of what happens when conservative policies are put into action, and I want to leave it a better place for generations to come.