Obama, Lofft and Johnson will help country, state face future challenges | ParkRecord.com

Obama, Lofft and Johnson will help country, state face future challenges

Park City experienced a parade of presidential candidates during the run-up to the coming general election but only one of those candidates stopped to visit with regular citizens.

Republican primary candidates Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani reserved their precious face time for big donors at private functions in Deer Valley while Democratic primary candidate Hillary Clinton solicited support at an invitation only fundraiser in the Snyderville Basin. Citizens barely got a wave from President George W. Bush during his one-night whistle stop to stump for Republican nominee John McCain.

Nope, the only presidential candidate to actually stop their motorcade and shake hands with voters at a no-contribution-required roadside rally on S.R. 224 was Senator Barack Obama.

Throughout his campaign Obama has given western states more attention than they have received from any presidential candidate in decades, effectively forcing his opponents to do the same. As a result Utah, Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Idaho Democrats and Republicans are playing a bigger role in shaping the national agenda.

During his impromptu speech at the base of the Utah Olympic Park last August, Obama reminded his audience that civil rights, women’s rights, the end of the war in Vietnam and the environmental movement all started at the grass-roots level. "Change in America happens from the bottom up It happens because millions of voices join together and make a decision that it is time for us to bring about a change," he said.

A year later and now attracting crowds numbering in the hundreds of thousands, Obama been inspiring Americans to reinvest their confidence in the political process. As a result, voters are already turning out in record numbers.

In view of his stand on environmental issues, health care, education and foreign policy, The Park Record encourages Utah voters, especially those in Summit County, to cast their votes in support of Senator Barack Obama for president.

For many of the same reasons, we hope residents will vote for Democrats Kathy Lofft and Christine Johnson who are running for seats in the Utah House of Representatives.

Johnson, the incumbent Representative for District 25, faced an uphill battle as a liberal Democrat entering an arena dominated by conservative Republicans. She has, however, commanded respect and admiration from her fellow legislators and has worked diligently to bring Park City’s unique interests to the forefront.

But Summit County desperately needs another legislator to help move the state’s toward a more progressive agenda. Democratic candidate Kathy Lofft, who is challenging incumbent Republican Mel Brown to represent District 53, is just such a candidate.

Lofft has been a vocal proponent of stronger air quality standards and is an articulate spokesperson for Park City’s diverse community. She understands citizens’ concerns about funding for education, health care and the legislature’s potential vulnerability to special interests.

Brown, on the other hand, has led the legislature astray on several pieces of legislation, one of which was clouded with conflicts of interest and questionable constitutionality. House Bill 466, which allowed private property owners to file for incorporation to avoid compliance with county planning codes, had to be rewritten the following year and another bill that could have overturned Summit County’s decision to change its form of government, was overruled.

Brown serves a minority constituency that is mired in the past. In contrast, Lofft is prepared to address the environmental, financial and cultural challenges Summit County and the state will face in the future.

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