Sunday, August 21, 2016

Letter: Rep. Quinn Not Up to the Task

Campaign season is in full-swing and Rep. Quinn and his supporters are falling all over themselves touting his budget motion that “saved” Chetek-Weyerhaeuser Area School District (CWASD). Quinn’s motion was hardly a profile in courage and should not persuade anyone to give him a second term.

Quinn merely allowed CWASD to maintain existing property tax rates -- a simple fix that cost the state nothing and would have been low-hanging-fruit for any representative with a pulse. Meanwhile, he did nothing to stop $3.2 million in general aid cuts to Rice Lake, Barron, Prairie Farm, and Spooner schools elsewhere in the budget.

Imagine if Quinn had never set foot in Madison. Would anything be different? The few laws he claims credit for either tinkered with eligibility requirements for woefully underfunded programs ($1.7 million statewide between broadband grants and teacher loans doesn’t accomplish much) or would have been introduced by another GOP backbencher seeking a NRA “A+” rating.

On the rare occasions when Quinn demonstrated the capacity for meaningful, independent thought, he was stymied by his own party. The man who campaigned on his “bipartisan leadership” couldn’t even get votes on sparing UW 2-year campuses from budget cuts, enacting term limits (conveniently exempting himself), or a modest boost for broadband funding.

Quinn is certainly visible within the district and many people like him personally, but we didn’t elect him to work the crowd at the fairgrounds. He is paid to represent us, to advocate for our interests and get things done in Madison that will really benefit us here at home. Unfortunately, he has shown that he is not up to the task.

Daniel Agne, Rice Lake