By Jon Redmond, District 11, Republican Environmentalist
It always strikes me that the Democrats seem to set the narrative. Democrats are allowed to paint Republicans as something we are not. This is very puzzling to me considering the atrocious track record they have managing Connecticut’s fiscal and financial health despite having a strong majority in both Connecticut legislative bodies and the Governorship for over a decade.
In the debates about the school budget and the BET last Spring, Republicans were labelled “anti-school” and in some cases “anti-children”! Democrats would also like you to believe that every Republican is a gun owner, or that only Democrats care about the environment while Republicans throw garbage out the window of their Hummer, while they joyride on the beach.
Being a Republican means being fiscally responsible with taxpayer funds, believing that government should work for the people and should be run efficiently so it can be more effective. Republicans believe in free enterprise, competition, meritocracy and we are staunch supporters of free market capitalism.
Most Republicans, like myself are also concerned about the environment. We just don’t want to spend wildly on frivolous programs that will drive taxes higher and produce little to no return on investment. I’ve heard Democrat friends of mine actually say things like “if we had composting in Greenwich, more people would move here”. I find myself shaking my head at this naive and overly idealistic vision.
Whether you drive an electric vehicle, recycle (properly), ride a bike or walk instead of driving your car or use a Brita water filter and not bottled water, these are all friendly to the environment without any taxpayer spend. These practices should be encouraged. My family tries to do these as much as possible. Several of my Republican friends have advocated a ban of plastic water bottles in Greenwich. I support that. These are policies that don’t cost the taxpayer or impose penalties on them and still achieve environmental benefits.
People want to live in communities that are safe, have reasonably low taxes, a good public school system, responsible fiscal management and good facilities. Those are the main drivers of why people go where they go, and each of those reasons have been hallmarks of Republican leadership in Greenwich for decades. Compare the track record of Republican led Greenwich with Democrat led Connecticut. One has been a success. The other a failure.
The Democrat report card in Connecticut is not pretty. Not only are their grades poor, but more importantly their effort has been dismal. Think of this. Democrats have for twelve years, enjoyed the ability to singlehandedly steer legislation in our state. What have they done to create jobs (0% job growth over a thirty year period)? Why have companies like GE, Starwood, Tudor Investments and Aetna moved to other states? Why are high net worth individuals who provide mass sums of tax revenue leaving our state (Barry Sternlicht, Paul Tudor Jones and others)? Why is wage growth in CT trailing almost every other state? Why has absolutely nothing been done to solve the problem of our unpaid pension liabilities???
One party rule in CT has failed in a very big way. We can do our part by voting them out of office and giving Republicans a chance. They deserve it. And so do we. It’s about time.