Heather Beaven for Congress

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Observer Endorsements for the Aug. 14 Primary


Date: August 4, 2012

by: The Observer Staff



In a few days, probably within hours of this issue hitting the driveways, I will start getting letters to the editor saying we shouldn’t have done endorsements. “Let us think for ourselves!” and “What makes you so high and mighty as to tell me how to vote?”


But, we trust that most people will understand what we’re attempting to do.


No matter how many times you read the Elections Guide or go to forums, it’s always helpful to get another opinion. And if you have another conversation with your neighbor about the Aug. 14 primary as a result of these endorsements, we have done our job. We want people to be talking about this because it might make them more likely to vote.


In addition, we feel it’s our responsibility to endorse. We care about this community. We want the best people to be elected. And we have done our homework, so we want to share it with you.


Members of our staff attend the public meetings, and we analyze what elected officials say each week. We conduct interviews with them on a regular basis, both formally and informally.


This summer, we created the Elections Guide, which consisted of interviews with 39 candidates. Then, we formed an ad hoc editorial board, analyzed the candidates, independently scored them using a ratings system and then met and debated for many hours as to which candidates we should endorse as a newspaper. We invite you to read Pages 8-9 to see what we came up with.


Unfortunately, we won’t be publishing any letters to the editor about specific candidates because they amount to being advertisements. We will allow candidate-specific comments on our website in response to the endorsements, however. And we will continue to conduct polls and ask for your opinions on our Facebook page, so please join us there for more debate.


— Brian McMillan


U.S. House of Representatives District 6 (Democrat): Heather Beaven

Palm Coast resident Heather Beaven does not mince words. One question stands out: We asked her if she’d be willing to pledge not to raise taxes. In response, she said: “No. … To take a pledge before you are privy to pretty significant details — whether they come across your desk or they come across your committee chair — is nonsensical.”


She has a point.


At the same time, she was not willing to engage in a discussion on how to cut the federal budget. And rather than make any suggestions about how to fix what she rightly called an “archaic, cumbersome and overly complicated” tax code, she simply said that Congress can’t be trusted to fix it.


By contrast, Beaven’s view of the future is one of hope and vision: She sees the United States as being in the middle of an economic transformation, and she believes that’s what we need to focus on.


She is a Navy veteran and is the CEO of the Florida Endowment Foundation, and her experience is above and beyond that of her 25-year-old opponent, Vipin Verma.


We recommend Beaven.

Copyright Heather Beaven for Congress 2012. All rights reserved.

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