34 GOP women seek state office Nov. 3

Suffrage rally planned for Saturday, Sept. 12

by Guy Page

September 10, 2020 – Of the 130-plus Republicans seeking statewide office in the November 3 general election, 34 are women. By contrast, only 27 GOP women were on 2018 general election ballot.

To celebrate the 100th year of the passage of the right to vote for women the Vermont Republican Party will sponsor an event at the Vermont statehouse commemorating the historic  passage of the Nineteen Amendment on Saturday, September 12 at 10 am.

The woman at the head of the ticket is Miriam Berry of Essex Junction, the GOP nominee for Congress. The first words on her Berry2020.net website are: “I oppose defunding the police. Those who choose to serve in law enforcement are an essential part of our community. They have my respect and support.” She’s a registered nurse and musician. 

In the race for State Treasurer, former state senator Carolyn Branagan of Georgia offers an important policy difference to incumbent Democrat Beth Pearce. Branagan supports a defined employee contribution to the severely underfunded state/school/muncipal employee pension fund. Pearce supports the status quo of a defined benefit contribution. The difference – and it’s important – is that future pensioners would not be guaranteed the specific amount of the retirement benefits, only the amount that would be contributed. The actual benefit also would depend on factors such as investment fund performance and mortality figures.

Both candidates are experienced, money-savvy, and somewhat politically independent. Both offer additional solutions to fixing the pension deficit. But if elected, Branagan’s advocacy for a defined contribution but not a defined benefit could be a gamechanging way to avoid pension fund insolvency. 

Women running for the state senate include Ericka Redic and Kylie Hollingsworth (Chittenden), Meg Hansen (Bennington), and Dawn-Marie Tomasi (Washington). 

The following GOP candidate list, adapted from a spreadsheet from  the Vermont Secretary of State’s office, cites GOP candidates for statewide office. It includes only candidates on the printed Nov. 3 ballot, and does not list any write-in campaigns. Some write-in campaigns may not be listed. 

Scott opposes Trump tariff on aluminum – Gov. Scott and other New England governors Sept. 8 sent a letter to President Donald Trump opposing his 10% tariffs on Canadian aluminum imports, meant to enhance domestic aluminum production, sales and jobs. “The impact of the tariffs will reduce competitiveness of aluminum-consuming industries and ripple throughout New England supply chains of manufacturing and technical production,” Scott and the other governors write.

Global Warming Solutions Act passes Legislature – veto coming? H688, the Global Warming Solutions Act, passed the Vermont Legislature yesterday with 102 votes, despite no Republicans casting “yes” votes. Both Reps. Anne Donahue (Berlin-Northfield) and Jim Harrison (Killington-Mendon) reversed their pre-pandemic “yes” votes in February to “no”. Donahue said the financial outlook for Vermont is grim and that waiting another few months to discuss the economic consequences carbon reductions would be prudent. 

Before the vote, Gov. Scott had said he would veto the bill because it gives interest groups the right to sue the state for non-compliance, and because it empowers an unelected climate cabinet with broad new carbon-reduction powers. It is unclear whether the governor will still veto the bill after yesterday’s vote cleared the 100-vote threshhold override a veto. 

Middlebury dismisses students for Covid infractions – it’s just a blurb on the pay-walled Addison Independent, but it says enough: “MIDDLEBURY — Several Middlebury College students have been dismissed from campus for COVID-19-related conduct violations, according an announcement..” There’s no announcement, yet, on the Middlebury College website or in the campus newspaper. But dismissing students shows that the college is serious about enforcing Covid regulations. The days of indulging the infractions by college students are long gone – at least as far as Covid is concerned.

Vermont Right to LIfe speaks its pro-life truth to hospital power today – Vermont Right to Life wants interested Vermonters to know that they can address the UVM Medical Center’s Board of Trustees about its policy of performing elective abortions. The board will meet 2 pm Thursday, Sept. 10.

Information to be read at the online meeting of the board, during the time set aside for public comment, can be emailed to Karrie Rich at karrie.rich@uvmhealth.org. It is suggested that you ask for confirmation that she has received your comments and that they will be read at the meeting. The following testimony has been submitted by Mary Beerworth, executive director of Vermont Right to Life.

In one pre-filed testimony, Right to Life Executive Director Mary Beerworth praised the hospital for delivering preemie triplets and urged them to extend such efforts to other unborn children at the same age as the triplets. 

Photo: Chittenden County Senate candidate Ericka Redic

VT Watercooler Comment of the Day:

SANDERS CALL TRUMP THREAT TO DEMOCRACY – “Thanks for your comments… another of your strong contributions over the years… wait, what contributions…sure would like to see a list of the bills proposed/passed! By the way, rather than expending energy taking cheap shots at people you might want to save it and try working on your abysmal house attendance record … after all you do have responsibilities as a representative of the people!”

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