Tonight I attended a "Meet the Candidate" event at Woods Cross City Hall for Dan Liljenquist who is one of the Republican candidates running for Utah State Senate District 23. I must admit that I was impressed with what he had to say. I didn't agree with his position on everything, however, I felt like his position on several items matched my feelings.
He was asked how the state can make sure the money that is given to education actually makes it to the classroom. He said that he would like to see a push for mandatory audits of money that is given to the school districts. He stated that it is possible that the money is being used for legitimate needs, but, the problem is that we just don't know where the money is going.
He also feels that campaign contributions should be used only for campaign purposes. I previously posted that I felt Mr. Liljenquist would not likely vote for ethics reform. I'd like to reverse that position at this time. I no longer feel like Dan Liljenquist is trying to buy a seat in the Utah State Senate. After hearing his thoughts on ethics in the State Senate, I feel that Mr. Liljenquist will be a positive influence for ethics changes. He stated that he feels the Senate should open their caucuses the same way that the Republicans in the Utah House of Representatives have.
Dan also said things about government being local first that really resonated with me. At the meeting tonight, I stated that Ron Mortensen's group, Citizens for Tax Fairness, was publicly opposed to the South Davis Recreation Center. I then asked Dan what his position is on cities coming together to spend tax dollars on things such as the South Davis Recreation Center. He said that he felt like his opinion on that doesn't matter because he doesn't feel that is a state issue. He feels like the state shouldn't be telling cities that they can or cannot come together on things like that. He said it's a city issue and the decision should be made by the city council. He likened the things that the state legislature, county commissions, and city councils, should be doing are like firing lanes. It's when the legislature starts crossing those firing lanes that it messes things up. He said that the sovereignty that states enjoy should be passed on to the cities as well.
All in all, I was very impressed with what Dan Liljenquist had to say. Based on that and the fact that I haven't heard any response at all from Ron Mortensen in regards to my e-mailed questions, I will be voting for Dan in the Republican Primary election.