By Isabel Matos
Curt Clawson has been paying for positive media coverage and the creation of an image of him as being an “outsider” for months now. He has been the best candidate money could buy. Every single page on that blog has a Clawson ad above it but that is not news. This poll was released just days ago. It is narrow enough that she can win and much different from the one taken a month ago, March 3rd, before Sarah’s endorsement. Anything can happen in this primary and there are others to talk about, so I will wait until after the primary to say what is wrong with this picture (sort of). I cannot hold back.
I do want to show the clip below from News-Press (generously converted by iizthatiiz) where Lizbeth explains why she is running for Congress to replace Trey Radel who was arrested on cocaine possession charges and resigned from office in January this year. Her rationale, temperament, level-headedness, and genuine advocacy for innocent life and traditional marriage are to be commended. You can also see how much she cares about representing her constituents well and coming to this country’s aid at a time where all the qualities needed to be part of the solution – she has.
There is NO excuse in my mind for voters in this district NOT to vote for her. None. And because I am a Rino watch dog and activist against the GOPe, I found it interesting that the Tea Party Express and Rand Paul endorsed the non-Palin candidate and non-Tea Party candidate who admittedly never went to a single Tea Party event in 2009 when it surged. Since when is Rand Paul a sought-after endorsement these days? Some were too happy to announce it. No surprise. The coverage and slams of Sarah Palin have been unethical as I have mentioned already because they have been paid for. That’s how Rinos roll.
I hope everyone in District 19 reads every word of the article by News Press and hears every she has to say. All eyes are on you! Don’t believe the HYPE or ADS! Read (the truth) instead and GOTV April 22nd to support Lizbeth!
THE TRUTH about LIZBETH BENACQUISTO
Lizbeth Benacquisto was once told by her mom that it was OK not to be perfect, life does not allow for such things. When life had presented Benacquisto with challenges, her mom said there was nothing wrong with starting over and building again.
The Fort Myers Republican keeps those words close to her heart and in many ways has lived by them. It is because of those convictions set by her mother, her own beliefs in helping others and a genuine dedication in wanting to serve the people of Southwest Florida that The News-Press endorses her for the U.S. House of Representatives seat in the 19th District, which includes Lee County and parts of Collier.
We believe she has the best chance of restoring trust to a seat and to a community, which was left angry and betrayed when former Rep. Trey Radel was arrested for cocaine possession, announced he was an alcoholic, and resigned from office. The district has been without representation in Washington since January.
The current campaign, which also includes Curt Clawson, Michael Dreikorn and Paige Kreegel, for the Republican nomination, has done very little to dissipate that anger. It has been one of the ugliest in Southwest Florida memory. It has been a campaign of distorted facts, accusations and name-calling. The campaign has left many of us wondering whether we should trust any of the Republicans based on the ruthless tactics of the candidates.We had hoped this would be a campaign about the issues and how any one of them could represent our interests and money with integrity and leadership. Instead, we got verbal brutality.
We wish Benacquisto had not been part of this and urge her to stop the negative ads and to spend the last days of the campaign focused on her own strengths and what she will do in Washington.
We believe that Benacquisto understands the political process, gets things done in the trenches and can better care for Southwest Florida. She has proven this in the Florida Senate, especially the last two years as majority leader. She has the ability to get people to work together, even if it meant she would let them take the credit. She has done it on the Senate floor, as vice chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee and in Southwest Florida with local leaders.
She has done it by working both sides of the aisle. That was evident last year when she accepted the challenge of passing the “Cancer Treatment Fairness Act.” It was a bill that struggled to get Senate support the previous two years. “I worked really hard, amassed a coalition of colleagues that understood that working to deny access to medication for folks battling cancer because it was cost prohibitive” was wrong, Benacquisto said. The legislative session was extended twice, but Benacquisto got the votes and it was signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott.
It’s tough to explain Benacquisto’s quick rise in the Senate for someone who just stepped into state politics about four years ago. She made it a priority to work with Senate colleagues on important bills and that brought her recognition. “In my first session, I was able to pass an extraordinary amount of bills. In any chamber, you build a coalition and move forward with good policy that is in the best interest of the people you serve. I have bucked the system, built coalitions around a conservative ideal and convinced folks why policy is sound,” she said.
She may be too idealistic when it comes to the Affordable Care Act. She, like most Republicans, wants to repeal the entire law. We do not believe that is possible, not with more than 7 million people already signed up and expecting health care. She considers the repeal her top priority should she get to Washington. We advise her to work with her colleagues on strategic reform of the program. She wants people to be able to sign up for health care programs in other states. She wants people to have access to tax credits similar to those available to businesses. Those are notable positions and ones worthy of continued dialogue and possible action in Washington.
She has been a strong supporter for improved and sustained water quality in Florida, leading efforts to provide $220 million in funding for Indian River Lagoon and Caloosahatchee basin projects, as well as storage areas for contaminated water flowing from Lake Okeechobee into our local estuaries. She wants a new release schedule of water from Lake O to help minimize the damage to the Caloosahatchee. It will be important for her to continue that fight in Washington, securing additional federal funding that could one day lead to the restoration of a natural flow way from Lake O south to the Everglades.
We agree with her position on flood insurance that more private insurers should be brought into the marketplace to help reduce costs and there should be more accountability on government and its hiring practices for companies that review and change flood maps. As another round of flood map revisions moves forward, we urge Benacquisto to take the lead on pushing for government transparency for these contracts that are costing taxpayers billions.
We share Benacquisto’s stance on more diversity on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. Currently, there are only 85 women among the 435 representatives, and 19 Republican woman.
We can’t afford another mistake in representation for this district. There is too much work to be done as the nation moves forward with massive health care changes, new education policies, immigration reform and lowering the budget deficit. We believe Benacquisto can represent our interests in those areas effectively.
• Age: 46
• Residence: Fort Myers