Saturday, June 04, 2016

My Take on Supervisor Race

Why I'm Supporting Kurt Friese (and Rod Sullivan)

Kurt Friese combines a love and knowledge of Johnson County's farms and small towns with the service he provides Iowa City. He applies the same levels of competence and compassion to social programs as to the challenges of running a business. His vision, keen mind, and easy manner will make him a meaningful and welcome addition to our Board of Supervisors."

-- Nicholas Johnson's Kurt Friese endorsement

Next Tuesday, June 7, will be a big one for the Democratic presidential primaries, with six states up for grabs (California, New Jersey, North and South Dakota, New Mexico and Montana).

But as former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Tip O'Neill, used to say, "all politics is local." And for Johnson County voters next Tuesday nothing could be more local than the election of three supervisors for the Johnson County Board of Supervisors.

As the quote with which I led this blog essay indicates, I'm supporting Kurt Friese.

The only reason I highlight, and lead, with him is because two of the other candidates are incumbents already better known to the voters.

Rod Sullivan is one of the best public officials I have ever known in any position anywhere in the United States -- because of many things from his personal values, life, and contributions to his public leadership as a supervisor. If you're unfamiliar with that record, you'll find a little more detail here: Rod Sullivan, "Sullivan Lays Out Qualifications, Record," Iowa City Press-Citizen (online), May 26, 2016, 3:53 p.m.

As the Press-Citizen summed it up in its endorsement, "Sullivan, a 12-year incumbent, has amassed an impressive record in his time as a supervisor." Editorial, "Sullivan, Green-Douglass, Friese Our Picks for Supervisor," Iowa City Press-Citizen (online), June 4, 2016, 9:20 a.m.

There's little more that need be said about Sullivan. If you still have questions, read the items linked above.

Kurt Friese, however, as the Press-Citizen notes in its endorsement of Friese, is a "newcomer."
"The only potential newcomer to the board in our endorsements, restaurant owner Friese would be an essential voice for sustainability and conservation during a time when development is king. As a longtime advocate for local and organic food, Friese has deep roots — pun absolutely intended — with farmers, business owners and activists. Friese is uniquely positioned to represent all these groups in local government and shows a passion for the preservation of farmland unmatched by any other candidate in the race. Johnson County has been blessed with reliable sources of revenue, and in electing a candidate who has so persuasively articulated a need for responsible growth, voters can show their commitment to ensuring a habitable, verdant community for future generations. Though another candidate, Jason Lewis, has agreed with Friese on many of these issues, his direct experience 'in the weeds' makes Friese our pick for the third and final seat."
Editorial, "Sullivan, Green-Douglass, Friese Our Picks for Supervisor," Iowa City Press-Citizen (online), June 4, 2016, 9:20 a.m.

For more about Kurt Friese, here is his own Press-Citizen column about his candidacy, Kurt Friese, "Friese Running on Issues, Not Allegiances," Iowa City Press-Citizen (online), May 25, 2016, 3:36 p.m., his Web page, and his Facebook page.

The Press-Citizen's editorial says of two more candidates: "another candidate, Jason Lewis, has agreed with Friese on many of these issues" and "Green-Douglass [whom the Press-Citizen also endorsed] has taken to her position well, learning the ropes and ably fulfilling her duty through the remainder of Terrence Neuzil's term." The paper expressed the wish that it could endorse both of them, as do I.

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