Early voting starts today and Election Day is only 15 days away. Thankfully, we have several resources to help us decide who to vote for. I am happy to inform you that local Christian Coalition Voter Guides are available for St Lucie County at www.FLVotesValues.com. I also expect state Christian Coalition Voter Guides for Indian River, St Lucie, Martin, and all other Florida counties to be available later today at http://www.ccfla.org/guides.php. St Lucie County voters may also wish to view the League of Women Voters forum and the St Lucie Chamber of Commerce Candidate Questionnaire. I encourage you to utilize these resources to educate yourself on where the candidates stand on the issues.
I have also preached two sermons on the importance of voting recently and invite you to listen as I apply Biblical principles to local, state, and national governments as well as provide historical quotes from our founding fathers and others.
Several have asked me to provide a list of candidates I’m endorsing and/or supporting in the primary election. I am going to provide this list for State and St Lucie County Races. My decision to endorse or support a candidate is my own decision and does not indicate the support or endorsement of any organization I am associated with. In some races, there is no clear cut conservative, or not enough information is available at this time to make a recommendation that I am comfortable with. In such cases, I will provide any insight I have into the candidates and point you to other sources. I will support a candidate if I feel that he/she is the best candidate for the position and holds to conservative values. I reserve endorsements only for those candidates who are clearly fiscal and social conservatives based on their survey responses, their record, and other indicators. I will only endorse candidates who are 100% prolife which means they support the proposed Florida Personhood Amendment which gives constitutional rights to preborn children, oppose funding Planned Parenthood and medical organizations that provide abortion counseling, and oppose condom ed. In the end however, you are responsible for your vote. Please do your homework, and vote your values.
I do apologize in advance for the length of this e-mail. I do normally try to keep e-mails brief; however, the nature of this e-mail requires space to explain. I also have provided headings for each race so that you can read the races that apply to you and skip the others. Feel free to forward this to friends as well. Future E-mails will list names and recommendations only, so I won’t bombard you with volumes of information every day.
Florida House District 80
Florida House District 80 covers parts of St Lucie, Indian River, and Brevard Counties. This race pits the incumbent who voted for the train to nowhere, raided trust funds, raised the budget, used stimulus funds to balance the budget, and raised your taxes on drivers and fishing licenses. I’m endorsing the challenger, Art Argenio who is one of the few politicians I know who truly believes in limited government. Art Argenio served in the Florida House and sat next to Marco Rubio when both were freshmen representatives. Art fought for TEA party principles long before the TEA Party existed and is a founding member of the Treasure Coast TEA Party. Art is also 100% prolife and helped bring to Florida the personhood movement which will provide constitutional rights to all humans. If you live in district 80 and value life, liberty, property, and prosperity, vote for Art Argenio.
I endorse Art Argenio for Florida House District 80, and I ask you to vote for Art Argenio August 24.
This is an interesting race pitting a career politician, Bill McCollum, verses a new comer, Rick Scott, who is funding his own campaign. Both have fought Obama care with McCollum leading a lawsuit against the federal government and Scott running adds against the program prior to its passage. You’ve probably heard the challenges going back and forth between the two. McCollum has charged Scott with ripping off taxpayers in the HCA Medicare fraud case. Scott has pointed out that McCollum voted to raise taxes 42 times while in congress. On the prolife front, McCollum has pointed out that while Scott was CEO of HCA, HCA purchased hospitals that performed abortions and allowed them to continue doing so. Scott has countered that McCollum’s position on stem cell research is virtually identical to Obama’s. Indeed, Politifact.com has shown that this assertion is essentially correct and that McCollum supports using frozen test tube babies from fertility clinics for experimentation. On the surface, I would like to support Scott if for nothing less than to shake up the Republican establishment that all too often talks limited government even as it grows the size of government; however, running hospitals that murder innocent babies is no light matter.
The other candidate, Mike McCalister, failed to fill out the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey and has worked for Upjohn which makes a drug used in 2nd trimester abortions. “This form of abortion … causes the uterus to contract intensely, pushing out the developing baby. The contractions are more violent than normal, natural contractions, so the unborn baby is frequently killed by them — some have even been decapitated. Many, however, have also been born alive.” Reference: http://www.lifesitenews.com/abortiontypes/
Unless one of these candidates endorses personhood, I will likely refrain from endorsing or supporting in this race.
This race has pitted Pam Bondi, a well spoken candidate promoting limited government versus the party establishment candidate Jeff Kottkamp. On first glance, I liked Bondi; however, Florida Family Policy Council’s John Stemberger has pointed out some troubling issues with Bondi including her tepidness on defending adoption against homosexual adoption and the fact that she didn’t care enough about the values community to reach out to any of the state values groups for support or even return their phone calls. You can read Stemberger’s article here.
I support Jeff Kottkamp for Florida Attorney General, and I ask you to vote for Jeff Kottkamp August 24 or sooner.
St Lucie County School Board District 1
I believe that Sandy Krischke is the best candidate for the job. Sandy was raised in the Catholic Church and has helped lead the youth at St Anastasia Catholic Church in Ft Pierce. Sandy has children in the St Lucie County School system and has been an advocate for improvements in our education system. Sandy Krischke is the only candidate in this race that is 100% opposed to condom ed. This is why I contacted her when looking for a values candidate for District 1 and asked her to run.
I endorse Sandy Krischke for St Lucie County School Board District 1, and I ask you to vote for Sandy Krischke August 24.
St Lucie County School Board District 3
Thankfully, this race has several candidates who oppose the condom ed curriculum currently in place in St Lucie County Schools. Of the candidates running, only one actively opposed the curriculum when it was debated. His name is Dr Mike Hofstee. Dr Mike Hofstee is a board member of SOHL (Sanctity of Human Life of the Treasure Coast) and a former board member of CareNet Pregnancy Center. He has also led the fight against tax payer funding of Planned Parenthood by the Children’s Services Council in St Lucie County. Dr Mike Hofstee is a board member of Morningside academy, a successful private school that regularly outperforms public schools at just over half the cost per student/per year. Hofstee is also a business man who can get things done, and he truly believes in limited government.
I am friends with another candidate who entered the race late, Donna Mills. Our church sent Kenny and Donna Mills into ministry in North Fort Pierce, and we have supported them ever since. They have done a wonderful job in their ministry to children in North Fort Pierce. Sadly, Mills has taken a stand in support of the condom ed curriculum in place, however. St Lucie County children deserve to be told the truth about the failure rates of condoms, which the current curriculum doesn’t do; they need to receive training in refusal skills, which the current curriculum doesn’t adequately do; and they deserve to have an education that prioritizes basic proficiencies such as reading, writing, and arithmetic over social indoctrination.
I endorse Dr Mike Hostee for St Lucie County School Board District 3 and ask you to vote for him August 24.
St Lucie County Commission District 2
If you are a Democrat, I encourage you to support Ken Waters. Ken Waters is the only Democratic candidate in District 2 that responded to the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey. Ken was running on TEA Party principles before there was a TEA Party. His answers this year were slightly less conservative on fiscal policy, but he’s still the most conservative candidate in this democratic primary.
In the Democratic Primary for St Lucie County Commission District 2, I support Ken Waters and ask any Democrats to vote for him August 24.
Republican candidate Paul Hiott has served the veteran community of Saint Lucie County well, and I wanted to support him. His support of the roll back rate (where millage rates are increased to bring in the same amount of property tax even though the property values declined). This wouldn’t be a problem if the budget were where it should be. The county budget is too big in my opinion though. Certainly, we must maintain support for law enforcement and roads, but much of what the county government does is unnecessary and needs to be cut. Moreover I have problems with several of Hiott’s answers on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey concerning both fiscal and social issues.
Tod Mowery’s experience as a regional land planner has alarmed some, including myself. I have asked Mowery whether he supports Agenda 21, and he assured me that he does not. On the Scripps/TC Palm Candidate Survey, Mowery argued against complicated land use schemes including TVC (Towns, Villages, and Countryside Land Use Planning). Both Republican candidates seem to have the same position on the development of agricultural land west of town though Mowery has more experience dealing with these issues than Hiott.
Todd Mowery’s fiscal and social conservative values on the other hand set him apart from Hiott. Mowery has managed cities in cash strapped Michigan. He knows how to balance budgets with limited funds, even if doing so requires consolidation or community volunteers. This perspective is a breath of fresh air in an environment where our politicians threaten to cut essential services, raise taxes, or both. Mowery’s answers on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey also show that he is both a fiscal and social conservative.
In the Republican Primary for St Lucie County Commission District 2, I endorse Tod Mowery and ask any Republicans to vote for him August 24.
St Lucie County Commission District 4
In this race, Al Rivett is the only candidate who filled out the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey. His answers show that he is a fiscal and social conservative. Having known Rivett for over 10 years, I believe that his answers accurately reflect his values. Rivett’s extensive experience in economic development as the director of the St Lucie County Chamber of Commerce make him a great choice in a time when St Lucie County’s unemployment rate is at 14%. Prior to Rivett taking the reigns at St Lucie Habitat for Humanity, the organization was virtually nonexistent. The productivity that St Lucie Habitat for Humanity achieved while Rivett was director, shows that he knows how to get an organization moving.
In the Republican Primary for St Lucie County Commission District 4, I endorse Al Rivett and ask any Republicans to vote for him August 24.
City of Port St Lucie Mayor
The Mayor’s race in Port Saint Lucie is a difficult one. In this race, there is no clear conservative; however, I will give my insight on several candidates below.
In the 2008 City races, I supported Victoria Huggins for City Council over Jack Kelly because she was moderately more conservative (though not as conservative as I would like). Of the candidates running, Huggins knows the city budget better than any candidate and is likely the most fiscally conservative; however, Huggins failed to submit a Christian Coalition Candidate Survey this year and is supporting Amendment 4. Amendment 4 will require voter approval of all land use changes. This means that voters who don’t own vacant land will make decisions affecting whether owners of vacant land can develop their property. This flies in the face of property rights and freedom and will harm Florida’s economy for years to come. This amendment will also have an adverse affect on the poor and others who don’t presently own homes since future development will be less likely thus increasing the price of existing homes, commercial property, and rents. I therefore cannot support Huggins in this race.
Christopher Cooper appears to be a social conservative on the Christian Coalition Voter Guide; however, Cooper was a part of growing the City’s budget from 200,000,000 to nearly 900,000,000 and saddling the City with debt to fund various city projects, including the city golf course and the Civic Center, both of which operate at a loss each year. Had the current city council not grown the size of government as fast as they did, they wouldn’t need to cut back now. Cooper also answered on his candidate survey that he supports having a nativity and menorah as a part of Christmas/Hanukah celebrations; however, he opposed it when the issue came before the city council. Anyone who wants more big government and more taxes should consider voting for Cooper. I do not support Cooper.
The following deserve honorable mentions. They are listed in alphabetical order to not show preference.
Shirley Copenhaver’s answers on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey come close to warranting support or endorsement, but Copenhaver’s willingness to contract with medical providers that also offer abortion counseling prevents me from supporting her.
Joann Faiella answered the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey fairly conservatively. I also attended a meeting with her and area pastors and conservative leaders. I was impressed with her and her stand on most social issues. However, she does work for the police department and does have union support. I fear that she may make contracts with city employees that are unsustainable. She also opposed Amendment 4 in the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey but seems to support it in the Scripps/TC Palm candidate questionnaire. Faiella failed to answer the roll back rate question on the Scripps/TC Palm candidate questionnaire. Faiella answered on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey that she would support to contracting with medical providers that also offer abortion counseling, but in the pastor’s meeting, she said that the counseling should be from a prolife perspective.
Albert Hickey’s answers on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey come close to warranting support or endorsement, but Hickey’s willingness to contract with medical providers that also offer abortion counseling prevents me from supporting him.
Jim Rich answered many of the questions on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey from a conservative perspective. From an economic development standpoint, he’s the best for the job in my opinion; however, he didn’t answer the roll back question in the Scripps/TC Palm candidate questionnaire and stated that he would support the roll back rate in the League of Women Voters forum. If the city’s budget were at an appropriate lever, I would have no problem with the rollback rate; however, the city’s budget needs to be cut not maintained. Rich also answered on the Christian Coalition Candidate Survey that he would support to contracting with medical providers that also offer abortion counseling, that he would participate in gay pride parades, and that he supports giving same sex and live in couples the same health benefits awarded married couples. This last issue is both fiscally and socially liberal. Though I would like to support Rich, I must pass.
I invite you to refer to the Christian Coalition Voter Guide (www.FLVotesValues.com) and the other mentioned resources in making your choice in this election.
City of Port St Lucie City Council District 1
This race thankfully has a clear conservative, Carl Iken. Iken is a founding member of the Treasure Coast TEA Party who will work to reign in wasteful spending. Iken is also a social conservative though perhaps for different reasons than me. I am confident that Carl Iken truly believes in limited government and will fight to bring fiscal and social conservative values to government on a city level. I also love Carl’s slogan and website: www.IkenDoIt.com!
I endorse Carl Iken for City of Port St Lucie City Council District 1, and I ask you to vote for Carl Iken August 24.
City of Port St Lucie City Council District 3
No recommendation: See the Christian Coalition Voter Guide at www.FLVotesValues.com.
City of Fort Pierce City Council District 2
No recommendation: See the Christian Coalition Voter Guide at www.FLVotesValues.com.
St Lucie County Judge Group 1
I believe that Clif Barnes has made strides in improving efficiency in the courts; however, Barnes answer yes to questions 1 & 2. It is beyond me how anyone can believe that the constitution means what it meant when it was written and that the constitution is a living breathing document that changes over time is concerning. George Dugan didn’t feel comfortable answering questions 2 & 3, however, he stated to me that questions 1 & 2 are mutually exclusive questions. If you believe in one, you can’t believe in the other.
In the St Lucie County Judge Group 1, I support George Dugan and ask any Republicans to vote for him August 24.