Tuesday, June 17, 2008


When I was about eight years old, I remember going up to BYU on a field trip with the cub scouts to see THE COMPUTER! The COMPUTER filled a fairly large room, buzzed with glowing tubes and wires, and we watched behind glass walls as the programers, wearing white lab coats, fed it punch cards to make it hum along. We were all really impressed. By the time I got to college, computers had shrunk to fit on desk tops, but they might as well have been programmed by punch cards. People who used computers had to know a language called DOS, an intimidating little code that was way too off-putting for a French and International Relations major like me. Twenty something years later, I am feeling much more confident around computers. I can handle email with the greatest of ease. I surf the web with the best of them. And I can type in Word or WordPerfect. But blogging is a new frontier for me.

But then, like a next generation of Star Trek, I'm boldly exploring a lot of new frontiers this year. I am also running for the Utah state legislature in district 64, which includes southeast Provo, northeast Springville, and parts of Spanish Fork, Benjamin, and Lakeshore.

When I left Washington thirteen years ago, I never imagined I would run for political office. I had seen first-hand how messy politics can be. And I had also become frustrated with how special interests can control the political process. I returned to Provo with a resolve to stop watching the news, reading papers, and just focus on my own little family. A plague on both of the parties, was my mantra.

But something happened to me recently. Last year, I watched as the Utah state legislature passed a voucher law without consulting with or listening to their constituents. In forums where they should have listened and could have heard that this was a volatile issue, legislators talked down to voters, and preceeded to act like they knew better than we did. When we finally rose up and got the issue on the ballot, we overturned the law. I suspect that, like me, voters not only felt that the voucher law was flawed, but they felt their elected officials had acted in a patronizing manner.

When I was asked to run for the legislature, I did not make the decision lightly. I knew that it would be a real battle and I am not the kind of person who likes to be in the spotlight. But I also felt strongly that we need change in the Utah state legislature. I also took seriously the admonition of my church to get involved in politics to promote moral values, and I do not believe those values are currently being represented in our state legislature.

My neighbors are all kind, generous people. But I'm seeing the state legislature passing laws that divide our communities, promote special interests, and waste taxpayer money. I promise to work to bring real Utah values back to our state legislature, to work for stronger schools, managed growth, better health care coverage, and, most importantly, ethics reform in government. I sincerely believe we need to hold our elected leaders to the same ethical and moral standards we teach our children.

So I am boldly going where I never would have thought I'd go, to explore new frontiers of technology and politics. I am a bit overwhelmed, but I am ready for the journey. Please join me. I promise to bring integrity, compassion, and accountability to our legislature.