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Joel Hussey Wants to Cut Benefits and Pensions

During a recent event with supporters, Joel Hussey confirmed his commitment to slashing teacher and firefighter pensions and health benefits if elected.

 

THERE IS ONE WAY to make sure firefighters and teachers know they are valued: maintain their healthcare benefits and pensions.  But Joel Hussey, the Republican candidate for the 45th Legislative District’s House of Representatives Position 1, would have none of that if elected.  These necessities – health benefits and pensions – are luxury items, according to Hussey, that must go.

Hussey spoke during a recent neighborhood meeting about how public sector employees are merely a drain on Washington State’s budget. During the gathering (which was recorded and posted to YouTube), Hussey proclaimed that, if elected, he would slash firefighters’ and teachers’ pensions and health benefits.  These public employees, according to Hussey, have had it too good for too long.  

These public sector employees are simply, in Hussey’s words, enjoying undeserved “gold-plated pensions” and “gold-plated healthcare plans.”  According to Hussey, firefighters and teachers “have a lot to lose” if he wins the election and if the Democrats lose.

While speaking with his supporters, Hussey didn’t show any empathy for the fact that teachers and firefighters depend on their pensions for retirement and depend on their healthcare plans.  To Hussey, it just doesn’t matter if those public sector employees suffer under his policies because, in his own words, he doesn’t need to buy into a pension plan because “I have a 401K.” (Don’t worry public sector employees, if elected, Joel Hussey is going to be just fine.) 

It's utterly confounding that Hussey does not give teachers and firefighters the support they deserve.  Then again, Hussey’s failure to support our public sector employees is not surprising given his background.  Hussey claims an educational prowess citing his experience serving on the Bellevue Christian School board.  But Hussey strategically omits the needed asterisk to that statement, which is that Bellevue Christian School is a private institution that is not part of Washington’s public education system.

And what’s more disturbing is that Hussey treats public sector jobs as though they are not real jobs.   Firefighters, teachers, police officers – these are essential service positions that sustain to our community.  But Hussey ignores the fact that our unemployment rate will rise if public sector employees’ jobs are cut in the same way as if private sector employees’ jobs are cut and instead Hussey wants to demote these positions to expendable dime-a-dozen resources. 

Joel Hussey’s lack of respect for Washington’s firefighters and teachers is yet another reason that Roger Goodman deserves our vote this November.  If you are a teacher or a firefighter, or if you know a teacher or a firefighter, then say NO! to Joel Hussey and say YES! to a better quality of life for our public sector employees.

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Trent Latta is an attorney and Kirkland resident.  He can be contacted at TrentLatta@gmail.com

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.

Steve October 12, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Elizabeth, I was at the town hall meeting at Wilder and most agreed that we need to look at a general overhaul of the tax system. The voters, who you claim would support a reasonable tax increase voted down an income tax and repealed the tax on soda and looks like, for the 5th time, will pass an initiative requiring a 2/3rds majority for tax increases. For the most part what came out of the panel was the legislature needs to come up with a blue panel idea to make the system both fair and more stable and predictable in the revenue. As Mr. Hussey said, as a small business owner, the one thing you do not want is uncertainty, not knowing what the tax rules will be. My question that was asked regarded the B&O tax. 2 years ago at the same town hall, the candidates sat up there and talked about how unfair it was. 2 years later nothing has changed. This time they said the same things. Rep. Goodman specifically called it a confiscation. Not sure why he did not do anything in the last 2 years to fix what he tells us is a horrible system.
Trent Latta October 31, 2012 at 07:26 PM
It is extremely telling that the original video in which Joel Hussey bashed firefighters and teachers has been removed from YouTube. It seems that Joel Hussey knows that he was caught saying something in close circles that he didn't want general voters to actually hear.
Eagle November 04, 2012 at 08:31 AM
Barack Obama spends $65,000 per year to send just two daughters to Sidwell Friends School. Yet he cut voucher programs for poor inner-city kids to attend this same school. I'm certain you voted for Obama, and are just fine with this. It looks as though your Mr. obama does not understand 'average' people.
Eagle November 04, 2012 at 08:36 AM
Unfortunately for small business owners, Goodman and Springer both voted to increase the B&O tax in 2010, a tax which they claimed they didn't like. So they made a bad thing even worse for small business owners. Time to fire these two spin-doctors.
Steve Sarich June 07, 2014 at 07:21 PM
Last session, Roger Goodman supported a bill (HB 2149) that would have ended medical cannabis in Washington State and would have forced medical patients to get their medication from the recreational pot stores that have still failed to open. This would have increased the cost of their medication by 400% and made many of the medications they rely on totally unavailable to them. This is cruel and uncompassionate. The Democratic Party has lost its moral compass here in Washington State.

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