Public officials set their sights on 2011

By John Laird, Columbian Editorial Page Editor

Published:

 

My investigative aides have spent the last several weeks snooping around the more visible public figures and ferreting out New Year’s resolutions. As it turns out, many of these famous people made more than just one resolution. Hoping to beat WikiLeaks to the punch, I herewith present these promises for the edification of the electorate:

Newly elected Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler resolves: To resist the urge to snarl, “Stop squawking about my name change. Here’s the deal. I’ll call you by whatever name you like, so why don’t you just return the courtesy and call me by whatever name I like? Got it? Good!”

Retired Congressman Brian Baird resolves: (1) To refrain from paraphrasing country singer Mac Davis and crooning, “Happiness is David Hedrick in my rear-view mirror.” (2) To consider purchasing a gavel.

Former congressional candidate David Hedrick resolves: (1) To never again tell a congressman, “Stay away from my kids!”, especially if a judge is to later issue Hedrick a no-contact order (subsequently rescinded) after Hedrick is arrested on suspicion of assaulting his wife. (2) To finally divulge how he came to be disabled while serving in the military. Inquiring minds want to know if the disability occurred while Hedrick was charging valiantly up some Pork Chop Hill or if it happened during some less heroic endeavor.

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray resolves: To never call the state GOP office and sing Toby Keith’s country hit, “How dya’ like me now?”

Three-time statewide election loser Dino Rossi resolves: (1) To find some way to get that hideous Helen Reddy anthem “I am woman! Hear me roar!” out of his head. (2) To stop shouting “When donkeys fly!” before interviewers can even finish asking about his running again.

Wealthy notolls.com activist David Madore resolves: To recruit only political candidates who promise to actually appear in public during the campaign.

Vancouver Mayor Tim Leavitt resolves: (1) To never again change his mind about bridge tolls … unless it’s a last-resort necessity for re-election. (2) To never again suspect voters are foolish enough to believe the Vancouver mayor actually has much influence at all over bridge tolls.

Former Vancouver Mayor Royce Pollard resolves: To wipe that “Didn’t I tell you elections have consequences?” smirk off his face.

Vancouver City Councilor Jeanne Harris resolves: (1) To never end a conversation in 2011 with: “Out! You are dismissed!” (2) To focus more on her side job as a counselor “trained in mediation and critical incident stress management.”

Vancouver City Councilor Jeanne Stewart resolves: (1) To invite Jeanne Harris over to watch Super Bowl XLV, put a few racks of baby back ribs in the smoker, sip some microbrews and promise together to serve on the council throughout 2011 without strangling each other. (2) To ask Mayor Leavitt to change the council’s seating order and let Pat “Sleepy” Campbell sit between the two Jeannes.

Clark County Commissioner Steve Stuart resolves: (1) To stop growing a beard every so often unless he’s going to wear plaid shirts and stocking caps (2) To never again come within three percentage points of losing an election to a hermit.

Clark County Commissioner Tom Mielke resolves: (1) To change his priorities and elevate attendance at public meetings to a greater importance than dry-walling his home. (2) To prove in 2011 that an elected official who is paid by taxpayers more than $100,000 in salary and car allowance really can pay his taxes on time.

Clark County jail custody officer Timothy Shotwell resolves: Not to run for sheriff a third time unless he can pass the test to become a sheriff’s deputy.

Washougal Mayor Sean Guard resolves: (1) To stop flashing his car lights at slowpokes in passing lanes. (2) To never again expect a Washington State Patrol trooper to be impressed with, “I’m the mayor.”

The Hounds of Whinerville resolve: To reflect on Muriel Humphrey’s timeless advice to her husband about the value of brevity, “Hubert, a speech does not need to be eternal to be immortal.”

The Sunday Opinion page columnist resolves: I’ll just let the readers finish this one. Meanwhile, to everyone in Clark County, Happy New Year!

John Laird is The Columbian’s editorial page editor. His column of personal opinion appears each Sunday. Reach him at john.laird@columbian.com.