Thursday, August 4, 2016

Letter: Quinn's Words Don't Match His Votes

A lot of people I know, even some who lean toward the Democrats, voted for Rep. Quinn in 2014 because he was a nice enough guy or because they knew him as a student. Some people liked what he said. I liked what he said too. A year ago I was so impressed by his words defending UW-BC from budget cuts that I even asked him if he was switching to the Democratic Party.

But his words haven’t matched his votes. Quinn promised in a radio interview in October 2014 that he would “stand on principle” and vote against any budget that eroded local control. But that didn’t stop him from “proudly” voting for Gov. Walker’s budget that included at least two dozen provisions ending local control and imposing unfunded mandates. Eleven rural Wisconsin Republicans had the courage to vote against the budget, but not Rep. Quinn. He did not “stand on principle”. He caved in.

How did this happen? Maybe it’s hard to get elected without accepting a whole lot of campaign money from die-hard conservatives living south of Hwy. 29. Those are people with extreme ideas about society and government. In 2014 Quinn took $73,000 from down there. That’s a whole lot more than he received from people in our 75th Assembly district. And a month ago, the Koch brothers’ PAC group, Americans For Prosperity, publicly stated they are rushing resources up to Rice Lake to defend him. Look at the tiny print on the bottom of that foot-long “vote for Quinn” card that you found hanging on your doorknob. That card was hung there by paid staff working for the Koch brothers.

I can understand that some folks voted for Quinn so that he would “Stand with Walker”. But none of us were prepared to see him go down to Madison and sit in his lap. It has been quite a disappointment.

Gerry Lisi, Chairperson of the Barron County Democratic Party
Appeared in the Rice Lake Chronotype, July 27, 2016