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The Conversation We Should Have

Denny Heck, candidate for the newly formed 10th Congressional District, blogs about the dangers that out-of-state SuperPACs pose to our local political dialogue.

My Mom and Dad taught me a lot through their words and actions. One of the most important lessons was this: In America, if you work hard and play by the rules, you can get ahead and live a comfortable, middle class life. You can own a home, save for retirement, help put your kids through college and take a family vacation every now and then.

That’s the America I believe in. That’s the America I want for my two sons and my (hopefully!) future grandkids.

And that’s why I’m running for Congress. I believe this election should be a conversation about how we grow and strengthen the American middle class and those working to get into it.

However, because of the influence of out-of-state, special interest SuperPACs, I’m afraid that conversation may never get to happen.

In 2002, one out of every three dollars spent in political campaigns was by “independent”, outside groups.  In 2012, that’s projected to become two out of every three dollars. For the first time ever, the overwhelming majority of money spent on political campaigns this year will not come from the candidates running but instead from third-party groups with unclear agendas.

These SuperPACs drown out the messages of local candidates.  There’s little transparency in how they operate and donations to them are unlimited. They can run millions of dollars in negative TV ads and you and I will never know who paid for them. Around the nation, SuperPACs are preventing the open, honest discussion of issues that should be the hallmark of any fair election.

That’s why I recently signed a “Super PAC Pledge” stating that these groups should stay out of the race for Washington’s new 10th Congressional District. I don’t think SuperPACs have any place in our local elections even if their ads are aimed at helping me.

In just two weeks, hundreds of people have joined me in my pledge. They join me in the belief that SuperPACs are harming our nation’s political discourse though their anonymous, negative, smear ads.  They join me in the belief that anonymous, unlimited, spending from out-of-state, special-interest groups has no place in our political dialogue.

Will you join us? Co-sign our SuperPAC Pledge by clicking here: http://bit.ly/Jz65MM

I’ve already spent months traveling around the 10th Congressional District hearing and listening from voters. In every corner I’ve heard the same thing: Let’s make this race about the issues. I agree, but that will only be able to happen if we keep SuperPACs out. Please join your neighbors and me and sign onto our pledge.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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