My opponent in the Rhode Island House District 67 election - Peter Costa Jr. - has obviously taken a page from the Republican national campaign playbook.
The way to run a campaign is to tell mistruths or half-truths, under the assumption that the voting public is either too ignorant or too apathetic to question the speaker’s honesty. Tell the mistruth long enough, and the voting public will simply, eventually accept it as fact. After all, if it’s on the Internet, it has to be true, right?
In a recent posting on the Barrington Patch website, Mr. Costa writes that "the future is too important to have someone representing us who neglects his basic duty and does not do his job."
In the time that I have served the voters of District 67 in the House of Representatives, I have had an attendance record of which I am proud, only one year failing (as a direct result of medical problems) to attend more than 90 percent of the session days.
I would not consider that neglecting my basic duty to the residents of Warren and Barrington -- a frivolous and totally unfounded accusation made by Mr. Costa.
I am proud of my record of service to the residents of District 67 and to the State of Rhode Island. Much has been accomplished.
Pension reform that was passed last year is real, verifiable money saved for our citizens, not just on the state level but also in our cities and towns, which are saving money on their pension costs.
New laws are making it easier to do business in Rhode Island and to open a business here, including those which provide for speedier building permits, improvements in the fire code that will cut expenses for businesses, and an aggressive review of all regulations in the state to eliminate unnecessary red tape and bureaucracy.
And in addition to helping businesses, we’ve approved an increase in the minimum wage to help those doing jobs vital to our economy but struggling to make ends meet.
We have not forgotten our veterans. We passed legislation to allow for a veteran designation on a driver’s license and we have OK’d a bond issue on this November’s ballot to fund renovations and improvements at the Veterans’ Home in Bristol.
We passed two other new laws of special concern for our towns -- one to allow communities to deal with the nuisance of abandoned vessels, and another to direct the Department of Environment Management to provide grants and technical support to farms and seafood businesses to promote sales.
We’ve also acted to make government more accessible and transparent through improvements to the Public Records Law and reporting requirements for companies engaged in political spending.
There is one thing about which I agree with Mr. Costa. The future is important. That is why I believe the voters of District 67 have a simple choice.
They can vote for me, someone they know, someone who has represented them faithfully for years, someone who has fought for the residents of Barrington and Warren.
Or they can vote for Mr. Costa, who wants to win so badly that he won’t let the truth, or his lack of accomplishments, get in the way.
Winning at all costs by using any questionable tactics possible is hardly the kind of quality voters want in their elected officials. If he cannot be trusted to tell the truth now, what can we expect if he is chosen to represent us?
Sincerely, Jan Malik