By CATHERINE OZMENT
I am writing to voice my strong support for Christine Chandler to represent State House District 43.
As our representative, Christine will be a champion for strong progressive values. She will fight to secure universal rights to health care and quality public education, to increase the minimum wage to a living wage, to solve the complex environmental issues New Mexico faces, to reform the criminal justice system to prioritize rehabilitation, to protect the rights of minority and vulnerable populations, and to bring much-needed infrastructure to rural communities.
At the recent League of Women Voters forum in Los Alamos, Christine voiced her commitment to these values and demonstrated her big-picture view of the challenges ahead. For example, she noted that allocating 1% of the Land Grant Permanent Fund to public education is a good start, but it’s not nearly enough. She emphasized that the next legislature must be creative and determined in seeking the resources necessary to fund essential state-level services, and it is that kind of bold, broad thinking we need to represent us at the state house.
After meeting with Christine many times to discuss a variety of issues, I have found that she exemplifies the qualities I value in a public servant. She actively seeks input from people who have different perspectives and different experiences, she asks hard questions, and she is straightforward about her positions. She says what she means, she does what she says, and she does not shy away from disagreement. These are rare qualities in an elected official, and I believe it makes her an excellent representative.
Christine Chandler understands that developing sound public policy is a fundamentally human endeavor. There are facts to gather and details to sift through, but real people have to live with the consequences of her decisions. Christine relentlessly pursues the best evidence available about an issue, but she does not lose track of the effect policies will have on her constituents’ experiences.
No amount of analysis will yield an objectively correct answer to the difficult ethical questions involved in representing a diverse constituency. We face complex problems with nuanced policy solutions that will have resounding effects on the everyday lives of people who reside in this district. Our next representative must be prepared to navigate the legal, factual, and human elements of the system. With her experience as a state legislative analyst, her dedication to making evidence-based decisions, and her enthusiasm for meeting with constituents who both agree and disagree with her, I can think of no one better than Christine Chandler to represent District 43.
Christine Chandler has shown me time and again that she is the right choice for District 43. She will represent us with compassion and conviction, and I am proud to cast my vote for her in the primary.