Wed, Oct 31, 2012 05:03 PM
My husband Harry Chen and I were among those who urged Anne
Gallivan to run for State Representative. Harry was honored to
represent the towns of Chittenden, Mendon, Killington and
Bridgewater for three terms. We know that Anne is the kind of
conscientious leader who will take the commitment to serve her
communities as responsibly as Harry did.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of current State Rep. Jim
Eckhardt. We learned with dismay that he took off two weeks each
year of the two-year term. This is almost unheard of - and meant
skipping almost three times as many votes as the typical House
member, along with key hearings and important committee work.
In his second year, Eckhardt's record was especially dismal - he
missed 22 out of 74 votes (nearly one third of the votes!) Eight
were from his own Health Care committee, including the year's most
important bill, H.559, the centerpiece of Vermont's health care
reform. How would a businessperson evaluate this kind of
The legislative session is only about four months
long. Harry knew his constituents counted on him to be there, and
missed only a handful of votes during six years in the legislature.
He never considered taking time off during this time, even though
we had children with February and April school vacations.
Add to this the fact that Eckhardt barely showed up in his towns
during the weeks following the devastation from Tropical Storm
Irene. We urge voters to consider whether they want a legislator
who takes this lackadaisical approach to representing his
Anne Gallivan will be a legislator you can count on to show up, be
a tenacious advocate for her communities, and take the job of State
Representative seriously. Please vote for Anne Gallivan to
represent Chittenden, Mendon, Killington and Bridgewater!
Anne Lezak, Burlington, Vt.